Basset hounds are known for their trademark long, floppy ears. While adorable, these pendulum ears are a haven for infection. Bacteria thrive in moist, dark places, and basset hound ears fit that habitat to a tee, as their shape and length prevent any light or air from entering the ear canals. To keep your hound happy, be sure to treat his ears at the first sign of infection.
Things You'll Need
- Ear cleanser
- Cotton balls
- Cotton squares
- Cotton-tipped applicators
Clean the ears with a gentle cleanser that has drying properties. Pour the ear flush from the bottle into the canal until the liquid starts to come out, then massage the base of the ear to try to work up any material that is hiding in the canal. Gently wipe out the discharge with large cotton balls or squares and repeat the process until the debris stops coming out. Because of the shape of the ears, debris can lurk in the ear folds. This can be cleaned using a cotton-tipped applicator. Usually, cleansers that contain vinegar or alcohol are helpful in keeping ears dry.
Apply the veterinary-prescribed medication to your basset hound's ears. Most infections can be cured with topical ointment. To administer the ointment, stick the applicator down in the canal just a few millimeters and apply the amount of the ointment that your vet recommends. Apply a small amount of the medication to the ear flaps as well, if they are inflamed. Massage the ear in order to spread the ointment inside the canal.
Examine the ear on a daily basis to monitor for any changes. If the ear appears worse, contact your veterinarian as your basset hound could be allergic to the medication. If the ear appears less red and your dog doesn't seem sensitive around the ear anymore, the infection is probably resolving.
Tips & Warnings
- In order to effectively treat your basset hound's ear infection, you must first have him examined by a veterinarian. There are many types of infections that can affect an ear, and the type of medication that is prescribed depends on what is causing the infection.
- Most infections can be prevented by weekly ear cleanings or after your basset hound's ears become wet, such as after swimming or receiving a bath.
- Finish all medication and use it for the length that your veterinarian prescribes. Stopping the medication too early could lead to a recurrent infection and medication resistance.
- It may be easier to clean the ears and apply the medication if you have help holding your basset hound. The most important aspect in treating your dog is ensuring his and your safety.
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