While yeast infections in dogs' ears can be a common occurrence in areas that experience hot and humid seasons. Our La Mesa vets discuss how yeast infections in dogs' ears occur and how they can be treated and prevented.
What Exactly Are Yeast Infections in Your Dog's Ears?
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 Bartlett 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.
The Most Common Causes of Yeast Infection in Your Dog's Ears
There are numerous reasons why the delicate environment within your pet's ear can be thrown off and result in a yeast infection, some of the most common causes include:
- Trapped moisture - especially 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
The Most Common Symptoms of Yeast Infections In Your Dog's Ears
Yeast ear infections can lead your dog to experience 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 Yeast Infections In Your Dog's Ears Are Treated
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 pet's ears at-home with a medicated cleanser
- Topical medications
- Oral antibiotics
- Anti-inflammatory medications
How To Prevent Yeast Infections In Your Dog's Ears
The key to preventing yeast ear infections in dogs is keeping the ear canal healthy and dry.
Whenever your pooch has been in water bathing or swimming 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.