How to treat fly bites on a dog's ears


If your dog spends a lot of time outdoors in the warmer months, you may notice that the tips of his ears develop a crusty coating along the edge. This hardened, rough layer results from the scabbing of hundreds of painful fly bites. Fly bites typically affect country dogs, particularly those living near farm animals. However, city-dwelling dogs are not immune to this unpleasant experience, especially if they are forced to live outdoors near garbage, spoiled food or fecal matter, which attracts a large number of flies.

Things You'll Need

  • Antiseptic soap
  • Paper towel
  • Rubber gloves
  • Antibacterial ointment gel
  • Elizabethan collar
  • Permethrin spray
  • Put on rubber gloves and wash your dog's ears gently using warm water and antiseptic soap. Inspect his ears carefully for maggots, especially if the bite sites are bloody or draining.

  • Dry his ears gently with a clean paper towel paper towel and apply antibacterial gel. Massage the gel into the crusty part of his ear tips with your fingers. The antibacterial ointment will prevent infection inside any open sores and soften the scabbed tissue.

  • Wash his ears and massage antibacterial ointment into the ear tips every day until the wounds heal completely. After a few days of washing and antibiotic gel treatments, the crusty layer on his ear tips will fall off like a scab. Allow the scabs to fall off naturally while you massage the gel into his skin. Don't attempt to pull or scrape off the scabs yourself, as this could prematurely expose raw skin.

  • Place an Elizabethan collar on your dog to prevent him from scratching or pawing at his ears. Keep him indoors until the wounds heal. Prevent future bites by applying a topical insecticide known as permethrin to his ears, but only do this after the scabs fall off and the skin heals completely. Most pet supply store sells both Elizabethan collars and permethrin spray.

Tips & Warnings

  • Give your dog a treat after washing his ears to reward him for his good behavior.
  • Take your dog to a veterinarian immediately if the bites on his ears are discharging yellow- or green-colored puss or you find maggots inside the tissue.

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