We all know that it’s important to regularly brush our dogs to prevent mats from forming, and to keep their nails trimmed short so they don’t get arthritis in their toes. One aspect that is too-often missed in dog grooming and health is keeping your dog’s ears clean!
Every dog has individual ears, so how often they need to be cleaned will vary with each dog.
Common Problems with Dog Ears
Just as with our ears, dogs can have a variety of problems in their ears. A small amount of wax is normal and healthy, but dogs can have an excess buildup of wax, just as in people. Dogs with drop ears are also prone to developing a buildup of yeast, resulting in an infection.
Ears with yeast or wax buildup tend to smell horrible, and also be really itchy for the dogs. Besides the itch and smell, they can become infected if not properly cleaned. Ear infections can lead to permanent damage to a dog’s ears, including hearing loss and physical distortion.
How to Clean a Dog’s Ears
First, you’ll need a proper and safe ear cleaner. Do not just use human products on your dogs, and don’t put straight rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or any other chemicals into your dog’s ear canals. You can severely damage their ears and make the problem worse.
One option is our In Pups We Trust Squeaky Clean Ears. As with all our products, this one is all-natural and made in the USA. The product is also gentle on the skin and won’t cause chemical burns like other products might. Plus, it uses aloe, eucalyptus, camphor, and wintergreen leaf oil, so it smells great!
You’ll want to start by putting some of the cleaner into your dog’s ear canal. It helps if the product isn’t super cold because the cold liquid can be uncomfortable. Many products, including Squeaky Clean Ears, will break down the wax and debris. This means you don’t have to stick cotton swabs down into your dog’s ears and risk damaging them.
After you’ve put the product into your dog’s ears, you can let them shake their head and remove it from their ear canals. You can also use cotton balls to clean any excess that is present on the outer edge of the dog’s ears.
How often you need to complete this process will vary depending on your dog. Dogs with drop ears tend to have more easily infected ears, due to the lack of oxygen flow, but ear infections can also be common in dogs with prick ears due to the opening being easily accessible for debris.
If you notice any signs of infection, including colored discharge, make sure to schedule a trip to your dog’s veterinarian in case antibiotics or other medical treatment is necessary. However, if you regularly clean your dog’s ears and make sure they are healthy, you can avoid an unnecessary trip to the vet!
Even though our dogs have fur, they can still be bitten by an insect. After all, we get insect bites under our clothes - bugs can be sneaky and small and find any place possible to grab a snack. Fortunately, there are some dog-safe insect repellents, such as our Buh Bye Bugs Spray, that will keep your dog safe from insects.
About Insect Bites in Dogs
As with humans, dogs can be allergic to bug bites. Bites can be localized and swollen, red, or puffy at the area of the bite. They can also cause a more systemic reaction and lead to vomiting, difficulty breathing, hives all over your dog's body, or an entirely swollen face. In some cases, this can progress to a severe condition called anaphylactic shock.
If your dog has an allergy to an insect, it's usually either the proteins in the saliva or the venom that causes the reaction. While some dogs are born with the allergy, continued exposure to a bite of that type of insect can create sensitivity. Common insects to cause issues with dogs are spiders, fleas, and ticks. Bee stings are also problematic for some dogs.
Treating Insect Bites in Dogs
Medication may be needed to treat your dog's insect bites or stings, including options of antihistamines and corticosteroids. In a more severe case, your dog may need IV fluids, oxygen, and epinephrine to survive the bite. These more severe reactions are rare, however, so the prognosis is usually good. However, it still sucks for our dogs (and takes time and money to head to the vet), so prevention is key.
Preventing Insect Bites in Dogs
The easiest way to prevent insect bites in dogs is to use a dog-safe bug repellent, such as our Buh Bye Bugs Spray, to keep your dog protected. Even if your dog is mostly inside, insects and bugs can still find their way into our homes.
In Pups We Trust is especially proud of our spray since it's safe to be licked! This means you can use the spray on even the most sensitive areas, like the ears, paws, and nose. It's also made locally in the USA and contains only all-natural ingredients.
Using the spray to repel bugs is the fastest, easiest, and safest way to ensure your dog doesn't develop an allergic reaction to bug bites or have to endure the itchiness and pain that comes with a bite or a string.
If you notice a sensitive spot on your dog be sure to try our Boo Boo Fixer it's only $5 and works on minor irritations