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our dog currently appears to have an ear infection. there is…

our dog currently appears to...
our dog currently appears to have an ear infection. there is not the odor that is normally associated with yeast infections. We have also noticed open sores at the end of each ear.
any suggestions until we can get the our vet would be much appreciated to bring her some comfort.
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
2/24/2013
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19,022
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
Verified

I am so sorry to hear about Stella's itchy, uncomfortable, red ear.

Ear infections can be caused by getting water in the ear and not drying it out promptly, but if she has repeated ear infections then these are often related to allergies, either food allergies or inhaled allergies (atopy).

In a young dog repeated ear infections are often related to food allergies. Dogs can develop allergies to any protein or carbohydrate so even if she is only fed one thing that can be what she is allergic to. Dogs with food allergies tend to lick and scratch their paws, face and ears the most, but any of the "allergy reactive areas" can be affected, and sometimes the only symptom can be repeated ear infections or ear itchiness. You could try a true hypoallergenic diet like Hills z/d or Purina Veterinary Diets HA. No treats, flavored medication or bones while on the diet and it must be used for a least 12 to 16 weeks to see the full effects. Most clients do report some improvement in 4 to 6 weeks.

If her ears seem to worsen seasonally then her allergies can be inhaled (like grass pollen, dust mites or molds) and you can use a combination of antihistamines and high doses of omega-3 fatty acids to help with those (they also help with the symptoms of flea allergy). In combination fatty acids and antihistamines work synergistically, much better than either one alone.

For now to get her comfortable you can try:

1)Benadryl (diphenhydramine only don't use the combination products with decongestants or acetaminophen as they can be toxic) at 1mg to 2mg per pound or one 25mg capsule per 25 pounds of dog orally every 8 hours.

OR 2)Claritin (loratidine) at 5mg per 25 pound dog once or twice daily.

OR 3)Hydroxyzine at 1mg per pound orally every 8 hours.

OR 4) Chlorpheniramine at 4mg to 8mg per dog once or twice daily.

Some dogs do better on one antihistamine rather than another, so I gave you a few different ones that you can try. Be aware antihistamines can cause sleepiness or hyperactivity in some dogs. These side effects do wear off with repeated use.

Omega-3 fatty acids are fish oil products. 3V by DVM or Derm Caps ES are good brand name products. Use the high end of the dosing schedule for your pup's weight.


I also recommend using a gentle ear cleaner. This removes excess wax and keeps the ear pH at levels that discourage infections. It also allows you to know what a normal ear looks like and catch ear infections very early. Sometimes with an early infection simply cleaning the ear daily is enough to stop it in its tracks. Ideally keep the hair out of her ears to keep wax from getting caught and allow air to circulate in the ear.

If her ear is very red after cleaning and drying it you can dab on a little cortisone cream (like cortaid) to the reddened area with a cotton swab.

If after 2 to 3 days with cleaning, antihistamine and omega 3 therapy, and cortisone she isn't improving then she will need to see her veterinarian for medication specific for yeast or bacteria that are causing his infection.

Please feel free to respond with further questions.

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Customer reply replied 5 years ago

yes stella has a allergy to chicken however has not had this. would allergy medication still be appropriate with not knowing if it is an allergy?

Customer reply replied 5 years ago

yes stella has a allergy to chicken however has not had this. would allergy medication still be appropriate with not knowing if it is an allergy? also any comment in regards XXXXX XXXXX open sores?

Customer reply replied 5 years ago
Relist: Incomplete answer.
stella has an allergy which we are aware so this is not the case also not recommendations regarding the open sores

Antihistamines and omega 3's should help reduce inflammation somewhat even if this isn't allergy related. Antihistamines tend to make them a little sleepy too which should make Stella care a little less about her uncomfortable ear, and shake her head a little less which is always a good thing.

The open sores may be related to head shaking, a secondary infection from itching the ear or even just her scratching or rubbing her ear.

Rarely they can be related to an autoimmune (body attacking self) condition such as vasculitis or pemphigus.

Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19,022
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
Verified
Dr. Kara and 87 other Dog Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
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Hi Karen,

I'm just following up on our conversation about Stella. How is everything going?

Dr Kara
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