Yeast ear infections can be a real problem for dogs - especially in the hot and humid summer months. Our Mooresville vets explain the basics about yeast ear infections in dogs including the causes, symptoms and how this issue can be treated and prevented.
Yeast Ear Infections
Yeast is a naturally occurring fungi found on your dog's skin and in their ears. When the correct balance of yeast exists your pet's skin and ears stay healthy. However, inflammation of the ear can cause yeast levels to accelerate and grow leading to a brown, greasy discharge within the ear canal and around the inside flap of your pup's ear. This discharge can be both itchy for your pup and smelly.
Our Mooresville vets see yeast infections in dog's ears far more often in the summer months when it is hot and humid than any other time of year. Hot humid weather provides the perfect environment for yeast to grow. When that moisture and warmth are combined with a lack of airflow caused by the shape of your dog's ears, yeast infections can often result.
Causes of Yeast Ear Infection in Dogs
There are numerous reasons why the delicate environment within your pup's ear can be thrown off and lead to a yeast infection, some of the most common include:
- Trapped moisture - particularly in dogs with long floppy ears
- Too much bathing
- Yeast allergy
- Frequent swimming
- Exercise in humid environments
- Feeding your dog sugary snacks
- Not cleaning your dog's ears often enough
Signs That Your Dog May Have A Yeast Ear Infection
If your dog has a yeast ear infection you may notice one or more of the following symptoms:
- Red or brown waxy discharge in the ear
- Itching, scratching & pawing at the ear
- A cheesy or musty smell coming from the ear
- Red or irritated ear
How to Get Rid Of a Yeast Infection in Dog's Ear
Ear infections are uncomfortable and itchy for dogs, not only that, they can become painful if the infection is left untreated and becomes more severe.
If you think that your dog may have a yeast infection in one or both ears it's time to head to the vet. Your veterinarian can determine the cause of your pup's ear infection and recommend the best treatment. During your dog's appointment, your vet will likely give your dog's ears a good cleaning to get treatment started off right.
The best treatment for your dog's yeast ear infection will depend upon the underlying cause and may include:
- Regularly cleaning your pup's ears at-home with a medicated cleanser
- Topical medications
- Oral antibiotics
- Anti-inflammatory medications
Preventing Ear Infections in Dogs
The trick to preventing yeast ear infections in dogs is keeping the ear canal healthy and dry.
If your pooch has been in water swimming - or after bathtime - be sure to dry your dog's ears well.
Underlying conditions such as allergies or hypothyroidism can cause your dog to experience chronic or recurring infections. Treatment for the underlying cause of your pup's ear infections is essential.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.