How to clean your dog’s ears

It is important to keep your puppy’s ears clean for good hygiene and to prevent ear infections, particularly in dogs that produce greater than normal amounts of ear wax and dogs that have more hair in their ears such as Spoodles compared to other dogs. Keeping your dog’s ears clean will also help to reduce any irritation to your dog from a build up of dirt. Also if you start to train your dog to have their ears cleaned and played with, they will be much more relaxed if you take them to a groomer and the groomer cleans their ears, but more importantly it will allow your veterinarian to examine your puppy’s ears without them panicking. This allows your veterinarian quick and easy access to remove any foreign material that may get lodged in your pup’s ears such as grass seeds etc. Below is a good guide to help you clean your pup’s ears.

Steps to clean your puppy’s ears

Step 1

Step 1 is just to check their ears at least once per week for any build up wax or dirt, especially if your puppy spends time outdoors in your yard. If your puppy plays on straw you will also need to be extra vigilant as pups that play on straw seem to get dirtier ears faster. When you give your dog a bath, make sure that you remove as much moisture from the ears as possible to discourage bacteria and yeast from growing.

Step 2

Wipe out as much of the dirt and wax from the inner side of the ear flap with a sterile cotton ball. It’s best to start from the ear canal and wipe toward the edge of the flap to avoid dragging bits of debris into the ear canal. If you find that the cotton ball alone is not sufficient to remove the sticky wax, wet the cotton ball in lukewarm water and ring it out. Then use it as before to wipe away as much of the ear wax as possible. You can also use a cotton tip in the same way as the cotton ball to get into the crevices of the ear flap that the cotton ball cannot reach. Do not put the cotton tip down the ear canal of your dog as you may damage their ear. Only go as far as you can reach with your finger with the cotton ball.

Step 3

The first 2 steps will normally be enough for most dogs for a routine cleaning but some dogs may need a bit more of a thorough cleaning from time to time or if the ears are particularly dirty. If your puppy’s ears are really dirty or if you suspect your puppy has ear mite then use an ear cleaning solution that will also kill any ear mites to be on the safe side. Just squeeze a few drops of the solution into the opening of the ear canal of your dog and then gently massage the solution in by rubbing the outer base of your puppy’s ear to spread the solution around the inside of the ear. Try not to let your puppy shake his/her head before you massage it in or they may expel it from their ears before it has a chance to work.

Step 4

Wait about 10-15 minutes and wipe away any wax or debris that comes out of the ear canal just as you did in step 2.

If you take your dog to the groomers to be washed be sure to thoroughly dry their ears when they get home in case they are still a little moist.

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