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Looking after my Spanners ears (advice needed)


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Morning all, 

I'm hoping to gain some advice regarding Spaniel ear hygiene. My Spaniel was diagnosed yesterday with a nasty ear infection in both ears, he's been prescribed with some antibiotic gel at source and seems better already. His outer ears looked OK, so it was very deceiving, I could tell he was uncomfortable around the ear that morning so that was my only prompt.  I'm always really diligent with his hygiene, when get get back from the field I always dry his ears thoroughly and check his outer ear for dirt/wax and will clean if necessary. I usually do the same with his eyes and will flush them out with saline if there are grass seeds in his lids etc. 

Is this just rotten luck or is there more that I can do after a day in the field? What I will say is that he's always been a swimmer and loves the water, we regularly incorporate the local Yeo freshwater river into his training regime. With the up and coming season and some sporting lined up, I want to ensure I'm doing everything I can to keep him tip top. 

Pic for attention! (Badger is 16 months old now, he was 8 months old in this picture)

IMG_3326.jpeg.71ce3685120905a5e869567973084b70.jpeg

Edited by CountryBoyTweed
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  • CountryBoyTweed changed the title to Looking after my Spanners ears (advice needed)

ear problems can be a real problem.........i had black and white spanners just like your one...i used to keep the hair in an around the ears short...........most of the prblems i had with them were a result of either canker or mites...alot of the market stuff for treating this is rubbish...also ear problems can be made worse by damaging the ear whilst cleaning it............i must say since i clipped my spainels out the ear problem slowly dissapeared.....but still could be weather related

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Bit of unmedicated ear cleaner into the ear once a week will help flush any overgrowth of bacteria or buildup of wax out, helping stop an infection before it starts. 

The other option is 1 part distilled vinigar to 5 parts pre boiled and cooled water, very gently syringed into the ear and wiped out occasionally. 

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Have the same problems with the labs ears this time of year. Get wet and the warm temperatures create a humid breeding ground for bugs. I use an ear cleaner from the vet which is alcohol based. Squirt it in and a good massage.

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I've always found the Johnson's ear drops very effective, off the shelf at your local pet shop.  Give it a good squib into the ear, try your best to avoid an immediate head shake though!  Then a real good rub in, have a bit of kitchen paper ready to dab up the excess.  Best done outside rather than in your kitchen, the "ear-shake splatters" can end up all over the cupboards, worktops or even further up the walls!

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16 hours ago, Dave at kelton said:

Have the same problems with the labs ears this time of year. Get wet and the warm temperatures create a humid breeding ground for bugs. I use an ear cleaner from the vet which is alcohol based. Squirt it in and a good massage.

 

12 hours ago, Jim Neal said:

I've always found the Johnson's ear drops very effective, off the shelf at your local pet shop.  Give it a good squib into the ear, try your best to avoid an immediate head shake though!  Then a real good rub in, have a bit of kitchen paper ready to dab up the excess.  Best done outside rather than in your kitchen, the "ear-shake splatters" can end up all over the cupboards, worktops or even further up the walls!

Thanks for all the golden advice. Goes to show that despite all the drying and wiping of the outer ear, the real problem spot is the ear canal in warmer weather when the dog's wet. How frequently would you use 'said' ear cleaner gents? once a week, daily, each time the dogs been subject to wet conditions/in the river? 

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5 hours ago, CountryBoyTweed said:

 

Thanks for all the golden advice. Goes to show that despite all the drying and wiping of the outer ear, the real problem spot is the ear canal in warmer weather when the dog's wet. How frequently would you use 'said' ear cleaner gents? once a week, daily, each time the dogs been subject to wet conditions/in the river? 

Once a week until I am happy no issues

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10 hours ago, CountryBoyTweed said:

Thanks for all the golden advice. Goes to show that despite all the drying and wiping of the outer ear, the real problem spot is the ear canal in warmer weather when the dog's wet. How frequently would you use 'said' ear cleaner gents? once a week, daily, each time the dogs been subject to wet conditions/in the river? 

My dogs have had intermittent spells of furious head shaking and ear scratching, I suspected ear mites, so in that case I treated once or even twice a day for a good few days.

Other than that if they're just getting a load of waxy gunk building up, treat it then give the outer ear a good old clean up later that day or the next day once the gunk has softened and started to become loose enough to remove.  I'd maybe look at 2 or 3 treatments spaced out every few days if it's really gunky, but often just the once is enough if the problem's not too bad.

Just play it by ear 😆

Sorry I'll get my coat......

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With the spaniel i was always putting in ear drops and taking black gung out and i always trimmed the hair inside  her ears  short to let the air circulate , it was always my last spaniel i had bother with the first one never had problem all her life 

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My sprocker the same.loves water 

after to talking to the the vet who has her own working cockers I was recommended an oral round wormer and flea treatment and squirt a few drops of this down every month and massage in scratching and head shaking a thing of the past. As above ears are clipped short in summer to aid cooling ! Not sure if it’s prescription or not.

ps have to add it does not stop spaniel becoming deaf when nose is down and bum is up !

atb agriv8

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Mine is under the vet for the same thing this week. Shooting in standing wheat and he got grass in the inner ear. This coupled with early hearing loss (i now only shoot with him in a hide using sub's) and all is not so good when they are worked hard and often. 

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Thanks for all the replies guys. I think it's fair to say it was probably a lack of awareness, not being able to inspect his ear canal that allowed it to get to the point where the Vets were needed. There seems to be a whole choice of ear cleaners available on the market, stretching from Natural oil remedies to anti bacterial cleaners direct from the Vet. Hopefully after a course of antibiotics and thereafter regular cleaning, this won't rear it's head again. 

Our vet who had a good appreciation for working dogs (and dogs that think they're part submarine), recommended a quick squirt every time they've been in the river. We've always given our dog monthly spot on treatment (frontline) since he was a pup to protect against mites and flees, I'll keep that up too. 

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Can I just break this news to you gently.... you have a dog springer, he's going to need the vet on average once every couple of months..... they're intent on busting themselves to pieces.... it's just what they're like! 😵

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Get a groomer to trim his ears and from then on then sprinkle "Thornit" in his ears once a weak, you can buy it from the bay of plenty for less than a tenner, use the back of a teaspoon handle and sprinkle it around the ear trying not to get too much in the actual ear canal. It reacts to heat and releases an antibiotic gas, works wonders, painless and cheap.  

Edited by bruno22rf
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