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My dog has been shaking his head for about two days now, but…

My dog has been shaking...
My dog has been shaking his head for about two days now, but when I look in his ears they appear clean. I carefully stuck a qtip in the deeper part of his ear and a little bit of dark stuff came out. It wasn't loaded or anything and now the qtips come out clean. There is no strong odor, it seems to be a normal ear smell. I'm wondering if what he has is lodged very deep in his ears, because when I rub the base of his ear I hear a "gooeyness" and he groans a bit when I do that. It does not seem to cause him pain, however, and I don't want to stick a qtip that deep. I'm wondering if it's wise to get a quality enzymatic cleaner, or something you can recommend that will reach the part of his ear that seems to be bothering him, or if I should just take him to a vet to get it assessed.
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Answered in 1 minute by:
4/20/2018
Dr. Altman
Dr. Altman, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 14,698
Experience: Practicing small animal veterinarian for 18 years.
Verified

Welcome to Justanswer! I am Dr. Altman and happy to assist you today! Please give me a few moments to respond and I will be back momentarily!

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I am so sorry to hear your dog is having issues with his ears!

I can give you some basic guidelines but if there is no change or they worsen then please consult your veterinarian to begin stronger treatment such as topical antibiotics/ steroids and possibly even oral ones as well... your veterinarian needs to view the horizontal canal with an otoscope to see whether there is a foreign body or middle ear infection and not something you can do at home.

- Benadryl 1 mg/ pound every 8 hours to help with the itch and discomfort of an infection/ inflammatory response. May sedate mildly
- 75/25 Water to white vinegar solution with cotton balls to wipe the ears out every 1-2 days (no q tips again please, you can puncture the ear drum if Charlie moves while you are doing this!) and remove any debris and infection
- Take a moist towel and put it in the freezer and apply to the ear or side of the face for relief of discomfort
- If you have any previously prescribed pain medication for him then that can also provide relief as well
- Please no over the counter ointments or salves which can put the tympanic membrane or inner ear at risk

I hope this makes sense and helps guide the treatment for your dog. If this is a moderate infection in the middle canal unfortunately it will require prescription topical medication to treat and hopefully allow this inflammation to resolve swiftly...

Please let me know how else I can assist you both today

If you have more questions or if I can help in any other way, please do not hesitate to ask! If you would like to accept my answer, please press RATE OUR CONVERSATION (I am not compensated in any other way). Bonuses are always welcome. Thanks!

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
forgive me- math is not my strong suit, 2/3 water to 1/3 vinegar solution with dipped cotton balls to clean out his ear?

No worries, yes that is ideal we don't want an acidic solution in the canal because it will burn and be painful. This is to wash out what you are able to without a medicated wash available

Please let me know if I can be of any further assistance to you both

If the information I have provided was helpful I would be grateful if you would rate our chat with the five stars at the top of the screen so I am compensated for my time. Thank you and best of luck to you both, truly!

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Would you recommend any type of flushing type otc ear cleaners that are non alcoholic?

This is a recommendation that even dermatologists use in this scenario. I would not advise an over the counter cleaner but this protocol

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Ok, I understand. You said to wipe away debris and infection, but the area I will be wiping has no debris. I suppose this is still the protocol, correct?

Yes, do what you can externally with the wipe and the cotton balls in water/ vinegar. Some will go down in the canal, you will massage and then he will shake and some of the debris will wash out. Then repeat the wiping after shaking but not aggressively shaking the ear, try to do this every other day and then immediately go on a walk so that there isn't aggressive shaking which can traumatize the pinna or flap of the ear and we have an entirely new problem

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Again likely he will need topical antibiotics to resolve this since it is so deep but this is what we can do at home first before a veterinary visit

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Ok sounds great. Thank you for clarifying!

You are very welcome
If you are satisfied with our chat please rate or accept with the stars on the top of your screen so I may be compensated for my time. If you are having any difficulties you can also state your rating (excellent) in our chat as an alternative. Thank you!

Dr. Altman
Dr. Altman, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 14,698
Experience: Practicing small animal veterinarian for 18 years.
Verified
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