Chihuahua Ear Infections

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Chihuahuas can get ear infections if not properly cared for.
Chihuahuas can get ear infections if not properly cared for. (Image: Chihuahua Wiese 2 image by Denny Becker from Fotolia.com)

Ear infections are miserable for dogs. Their ears sting, itch and, if the infection is serve, their sense of balance is affected. Over time, ear infections in chihuahuas get worse if not immediately treated by a vet. Luckily, chihuahuas are not prone to developing ear infections because their tall ears allow air to circulate. However, this doesn't mean they can't still be affected by infection if not properly cared for by their owners. Being knowledgeable about ear infections in chihuahuas helps you to act promptly when one occurs.

Identification

A chihuahua with an ear infection will cry or snap at you when his ears are touched. You may notice that your dog avoids moving his head. The ears may appear to be bloody or swollen from where the chihuahua has scratched them. Serve ear infections may cause your dog to become disoriented, walk in circles and vomit.

If you suspect your Chihuahua may have an ear infection, carefully look inside his ears for swelling, redness and excessive ear wax build-up. Yellow-green pus and dark-colored wax may be a sign of affection. If you see tiny black bugs moving around in your chihuahua’s ears, he has mites. Infections can also be caused by yeast and fungal bacteria. Your vet will use special tools to enter the ear canal and ear drum to diagnose ear infections.

Significance

Just like a human ear infection, an infection in a dog is just as painful. In addition, dogs can also suffer from serious problems such as loss of hearing, loss of balance and death if untreated. Often, gentle dogs become overly aggressive when under pain and stress, which may result in snapping and biting behavior toward humans. In some cases, if accidents occur where the dog does seriously injure a human with a bite, that dog may be euthanized. Such an outcome can be avoided if owners are knowledgeable about their pet's health.

Prevention

To eliminate the chances that your chihuahua will get an ear infection make sure his ears are always dry after bathing. Never use a cotton swab to clean out your dog’s ears. This method only pushes wax and dirt further into the ear canal. Visit your vet to get yearly check-ups, shots and to have your dog’s ears cleaned by a professional.

Treatment

Treatments for canine ear infections come in medicated drops and ointments. In serious cases, an oral antibiotic can be prescribed. If the ear infection is caused by yeast or fungal contaminants, a drug called Rifamycin will be prescribed. For infections caused by ear mites, drops called Pesticides (made up of insecticides called Pyrethrins) will be given to your pet.

Time Frame

Take your Chihuahua to the vet immediately after noticing symptoms of an ear infection. In just a few days, an infection can spread. Ear mite infections can take up to two weeks to heal. Antibiotic ear drops will likely be prescribed for a 10-day period. If treatment is delayed for a long period of time, loss of hearing could occur.

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