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Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

I have a 12 year old boxer who is healthy except for chronic ear infections. It is an inner ear infection, and she has been to the vet countless times. She is on Zenquin 10 days a month, and off 20. She is also on Remedyl (pain medication) and now takes Antihistamines twice daily. Her eardrums have ruptured more than once.

As of the last month she has a terrible balance problem and I have to help her (by holding on to her harness) up or down any stairs, and sometimes when she first tries to get up. As a rule, after she is up for a few minutes, it is better. She is miserable some days and just hangs her head.

It does not seem anything the vet does helps much, and i really have no idea what to do. I have tried in the last few days putting a drop of alcohol in each ear. I have also been making all her food from scratch to possibly alleviate the problem if it is from canned dog food. If anyone has any ideas I am all ears.


Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Try plain yogurt. 1 eyedropper full in the infected ear. Works best for yeast type infections. (07/14/2004)

By cairene

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Having recently had a Bassett Hound with chronic ear infections, I can sympathize with you. Only remedy I ever found was to realize that the ear area needs "air and dry" conditions. So I gently reamed out Rusty"s ears with tissue every I have Pugs with similar problems, remedy is the same. On a positive note, once they understand how it helps them, they will remind you to do it. (07/14/2004)

By Ronda.

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Chronic ear infections are most likely the result of a food allergy. Eliminate all treats (both people food and specific dog treats) then try gradually switching to a diet with different meat and carb sources. Switch the food gradually to avoid upset stomach and diarrhea by mixing 75% old food with 25% new food for a few days, then 50-50, then 25% old with 75% new, then 100% new. Switch to a diet that is strictly lamb and rice, fish and potato or venison and pea. Make sure that the new diet doesn't have any chicken or corn at all (some dog foods say lamb and rice on the front of the bag, but list chicken and corn in the ingredients). Use a soft towel to gently clean your dogs ears daily, then use a solution of 10 parts water to 1 part vinegar to rinse the ear, massaging well. Dry the ear again with a soft towel. Don't use cotton swabs! Each time you go to the vet, they should be taking a sample of the "gunk" that is in your dogs ears to be sure that they are giving you the right medication. If the vet is simply happy to treat the symptom (ear infection) without looking for the cause of the infection (allergies, mis-shapen ear canal, to much hair) then you should seek out a second opinion from a holistic vet. May be more expensive initially, but once the cause of the infections is found and dealt with, you won't have to make as many trips to the vet or constantly purchase medication. And be sure to keep your dog's ears dry; swimming, baths, even getting his ears in his water dish can affect ear infections. (07/16/2004)


By Patticat

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

I was told to use 1/2 hydrogen peroxide and 1/2 vinegar and spray in ears once a week. I also picked up eucalyptus drops. Will this also help? (07/20/2004)

By mawmaw27

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Try putting a couple drops of angstrom size silver available at health food stores in his ear. You could also add tea tree oil to yogurt. (07/27/2004)

By Shirley

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Mix equal parts pau d'arco tincture and mineral oil and put several drops in your dogs ears two or three times a day for several days, also Vit C and natural non toxic food from Health food store and putting some almond or olive oil in his ears will help with mites. (07/29/2004)

By Shirl

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

I found that using an athletes foot spray worked for my Lhasa. I sprayed it in the infected ear until it cleared up and then I used the powder to keep things under control. (08/12/2004)

By cdilley

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Give the dog two tablespoons of Yogurt per day also. This helps with the yeast infections of the ears lots of droopy eared dogs suffer from. (11/10/2004)

By Robyn

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

This is what my pet food delivery girl gave me and it works!

"Blue Power Ear Treatment"

16 Oz. Isopropyl Alcohol
4 Tablespoons Boric Acid Powder
16 Drops Gentian Violet Solution 1%

Mix together in alcohol bottle and shake well. You also will need to shake solution every time you use it to disperse the Boric Acid Powder. To use, purchase the "Clairol" type plastic bottle to dispense solution to affected ears.

TREATMENT: Evaluate condition of ears before treating and if very inflamed and sore do not attempt to pull hair or clean out ear at all. Wait until inflammation has subsided which will be about 2 days.

Shake the bottle each time before using. Flood the ear with solution (gently squirt bottle), massage gently to the count of 60, wipe with a tissue. Flood again on first treatment, wipe with a tissue and leave alone without massage. The dog will shake out the excess, which can be wiped with a tissue. BEST DONE OUTSIDE WEARING OLD CLOTHES as the Gentian Violet does stain fabrics.

The SCHEDULE of treatment is as follows:

Treat 2x per day for the first week to two weeks depending upon severity of ears
Treat 1x per day for the next 1-2 weeks
Treat 1x per month (or even less frequently, depending on the dog)

All of these ingredients should be available at a pharmacy. Despite the alcohol, most dogs will not object to even the first treatment. The Boric Acid Powder soothes the ear. The Gentian Violet Solution is an anti-infection agent.

The solution appears to work well on any and all ear problems from mites to wax to canker. After the 2nd or 3rd day you can clean out the ear with a Q-tip or cotton balls. Their success rate for this treatment is 95-99%. Those who do not succeed have usually not done the treatment long enough or have not been regular about it.

Dogs on the verge of ear canal surgery have been returned to normal with only the regular follow-up treatment to keep the ear healthy. If an infection seems to be remaining in the treated ear after the above course of treatment, you may also have some Pseudomonas
bacteria in the site. This can be eradicated by using a gentle flush of raw apple cider vinegar and water (warm). Use 2 tablespoons of vinegar to one cup of water, 2 x per week.

They have found the Blue Power Solution to be effective for treating fungus-type infections on the feet and elsewhere on the dog, for cuts on dogs or people and for hot spots. You may find other uses for this simple anti-infective agent. Remember it is for external use only and be careful not to get into the eyes." (04/13/2005)

By cj1617

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Try wiping the doggies ears with baby wipes. That should dry them out. If your dog has hair in the ears powder them with baby powder then pull the hair out gently.


then wipe out with the baby wipes. This helps my poodle"Tara" (04/26/2005)

By tina

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

My vet prescribed and sold me Gentamycin ear drops, which worked very well, but the itty bitty bottle X 2 dogs X chronic infection= $$$. I was able to find a local compounding pharmacy who made the stuff up for me, in a 4 oz bottle, for much less than the tiny bottle the vet sold me. (04/26/2005)

By Linda

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Don't give your dog Rimadyl for too long,it isn't good for him and will make him sick later on. (05/25/2005)

By sandy dawson

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

I agree 100% with what Patticat said. Please take her advise for the sake of your dog. I'm a dog groomer, and I see this all the time. Patticat is right on the money by seeking to find the cause of the infection, and treating that while making sure that your dog's ears are regularly cleaned and kept dry. I'm so glad that she realizes that many seemingly unrelated illnesses, are actually the result of a food allergy. Please remember to be incredibly gentle with your dog's ears, they're sure to be super sensitive right now. Also it will help to select a high quality, all natural food for your dog. They may seem more expensive, but you don't need to feed as much to your dog, so it works out to be about the same.
Be cautious of some of the advise offered here. (Including my own.) Some of the remedies seem like they were gleaned from the dark ages.

Best of luck to you! (05/25/2005)

By peaceandlove

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Rimadyl is very bad for your dog and you should consider an alternative treatment. A lot of ear infections are actually caused by an allergy from their diet. Consider switching to a very high quality natural food- not any of the stuff you get from a big pet store like Petsmart or Petco... they won't have the good stuff there. Innova Evo is a extremely good brand and they have a dog food ingredient calculator that compares ingredients of different brands on their site and explains why each ingredient is good or bad.
Your dog is quite old for a large breed dog and you definitely want to make her last as long as you can without suffering. A change in her diet will not only help her infection and immune system, but will keep her with you for longer.
There are also lots of opinions on the RAW diet or Barf diet, but before you rule it out you should do some serious research and make a factual decision rather than one based on opinion. I am familiar with the diet and know MANY people who successfully feed RAW and have yet to come across one person who didn't completely love the results in the health and vitality in their animals.
Hope this helps~ Alison Voore (05/25/2005)

By Alison Voore

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Definitely try hydrogen peroxide let sit & bubble briefly then wipe out ear. Your dog will not like this but it won't hurt them.This was recommended to my mother to use on my ears as a small boy by doctors & audiologist,I'm now 47 and still use hydrogen peroxide to clean ears. (05/25/2005)

By James Quirk.

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Ok, my basset has an infection in one ear only. I was skeptical when the vet put her a low antigen diet. Penny suffered horribly for months and the special diet was totally ineffective and allowed the infection to spread to her inner ear. Be very wary of these miracle diets. I treated her with Doxycycline and she got much better. Sometimes you have to overrule the vet's treatment strategy. If the vet does no cytology from the FIRST visit then tell them to. (quote)(/quote) (05/27/2005)

By Alan Edwards

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

My Catahoula leopard dog had an ear infection on and off for over a year and a half. The vet finally said that it had to be a food allergy. He put Zedd on Iams/Eukanuba kangaroo and oat dog food. Zedd was eating a quality brand lamb and rice dry dog food before this. The vet told me no other protein. I even make cookies for Zedd to eat instead of the commercial dog biscuits.

Zedd has not had an ear infection since then.

Christy (05/30/2005)

By creaky

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

I have a lab mix with constant ear problems - the only remedy I've found is Zymox (over the counter about $15) and a coon dog "recipe" that I've misplaced. It involves mixing hydrogen peroxide with several other ingredients and using a plastic syringe-type device to inject into ears. With the Zymox, this cleared up my dog's problem. Now I just use the Zymox once a week and he hasn't gotten any other infections for several years now. If I can find the "coon dog" recipe I'll post it - or maybe someone else has it? (06/07/2005)

By rusty

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Sophialouise is my Bassett hounds name and her brother Fred has chronic ear problems. I have been to the vet numerous times for his ears and nothing seems to help except the cost of the vet bill. C,ame on the internet and found a remedy and voila, it has helped Fred's ears 150 %. It is a home remedy, rubbing alcohol 16 0z, 4 Tbs boric acid and 16 drops gentian violet solution 1%. Shake well before putting in dogs ears, flood the ear with solution. Gently count 60 rubs and wipe excess. If the ears are bad flood twice and no massage. Do this 2x daily for two weeks. Then once per day for a week, make sure you massage very well. (06/16/2005)

By sophialouise

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

My basset hound has chronic ear infections and we do a combination of the following:

1- she takes an antibiotic in pill form twice a day for 10 days
2- I clean her ears every day with OtiClean ear solution
2- I put Zenquin antibiotic ear drops in her ears (06/26/2005)


Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

My Bassett has had bad ears for ever. For 4 yrs I did as one vet said, 1/2 vinegar 1/2 peroxide, flush ears 2-3 x a wk. That didn't help. His ears stunk so bad we couldn't stay in the house with him. Then we tried a different vet. He told me after a while that he would change the pH of the ear and make it acidotic and would turn to Pheudomonus. The vet told me his ears needed to be alkaline base and that wouldn't burn so bad. We put Stretch on oral Baytril and Baytril Otic drops said had to treat both ways if wanted to get it well. Also after 20 yrs we found ear wash that was alkaline and doesn't burn so bad. Stretch still doesn't like it but its really helped his ears after 4-5 yrs. Have to clean ears with the foaming ear cleanser and a wipe out really good and then put in a drying flushing solution. He tolerates it so much better and its really helped. Vet said it would take 90 days or better but they should get well. (07/06/2005)

By billie ( guest post)

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

I own a pet nutrition and training center and see this a lot. It is often a wheat allergy. If you look up Solid Gold Dog food you there is info on that web site about chronic ear infections and wheat allergies. Good luck! (09/17/2005)

By Laura

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

My husband and I use a mixture of Witch Hazel, an astringent, tea tree oil, and peroxide to clean our Great Pyrenees Puppies ears. This seems to work well and is all natural. He also has had recurrent ear problems and we are thinking now that because he is so clean, it must be some sort of a defect in the breed. Many others have agreed that long eared doggies have this problem often. I hope your doggie feels better-
Debbie in Rancho Cucamonga, CA (03/15/2006)


Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

I have been working with dogs as a trainer/groomer and vet tech for many years, and I've found that if there is any kind of allergy that your dog has, it may affect the ears, causing chronic infections. Benadryl is safe for dogs, and blocks the allergies, and if given twice daily every day, it may alleviate the problem.
Good luck
Kerri (05/04/2006)

By Kerri

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Get rid of all grains, including corn in her diet. Raw diet works best for dogs and cats. If not raw at least go to a kibble that has no grains such as Raw Instincts made by Natures Variety. After a few months no more ear problems. While waiting for the diet to kick in get some Zymox with 1% Hydrocortisone. Put in the ears twice a day for a week, then once a day for a week and then once a week. Do an online search for the best price, it works miracles. (05/04/2006)

By shellycat

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

For those with dogs that have yeast infections and have heard of Gentian Violet Solution 1% and can't find it, Wal Mart pharmacy carries it.

16 0z Isopropyl alcohol
4 tablespoons Boric Acid Powder(found in laundry soap isle)
16 drops Gentian Violet Solution 1%

Mix well, shake every time you use it, it will dry out the area to prevent the yeast infections(b)(/b) (10/02/2006)

By TatsTerrie

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Hi there. I'm shocked that nobody has suggested this to you yet. My dog is 10 years old (yellow lab) and he has chronic ear infections. It is so bad now that he is often in pain, emits a brownish "goo" from his ear and always shakes his head, loses balance, and walks with his head cocked. The almost always effective treatment is to have the ear canal totally removed. It is a common procedure now. I know it's hard to picture your dog with only one ear, but he/she will be just like they were as a pup. No pain, no infection, nothing, except a loss of hearing in the one ear. I definitely think you should talk to a vet about this operation. (12/03/2006)

By Toronto Dog Lover

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

My Rottie has been with me for approx 20 months. Two months after he came to live with me, I noticed that his ears were very waxy. I cleaned them, but this didn't help. I took him to the vet and was given ear drops. After a while they cleared up but reoccurred every 2 months like clockwork. Kept taking him to the vet, got ear drops. Finally, got a second opinion--this vet said it looked like he had food allergies. Turns out he did (to all poultry, beef and dairy) as of this writing also looks like fish also. My pups ear infection problems are not as severe as your pup, but try another vet and put your pup on a food allergy test diet. You may be surprised. (P.S. does your pup have any other symptoms i.e., goopy in the eyes, or flaky skin? If the answer is yes I would be 99% sure its food allergies.) Just a thought. (07/25/2007)

By Alex Thomas

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

I was looking for the same information, this seemed somewhat reasonable. I am sure you have seen it. Good article. I, myself, am starting with the vinegar solution. (07/31/2007)

By joanna

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

I have a 3 year old Bassett with his first ear infection I was told to use women's Vagasil. I am about to try it. The person that told me raised puppies and she used it on all of her puppies that developed ear infections. Looks like to me its worth a try. (08/06/2007)

By leslie

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Please be very careful of the Rimadyl. We had a lab that almost died from Rimadyl poisoning. Cost us $5,000 to save his life. It starts out with lethargy and then gets worse. If your dog cannot walk by himself, I would seriously look into a good vetrinarian teaching school and see if he has Rimadyl poisoning. Good luck. (09/21/2007)

By Polly Leahy

Dog with Chronic Ear Infection

Hi there. The first and most important thing I have learned with my many pets is this. Each vet has their own thoughts, views and opinions. Hard to find a good one that not only actually cares for your pet but wants them well more than just sucking your wallet completely dry by making you come back 10 times for the same ailment. My advice, find a new vet. Your current vet sounds like he/she can't find the root of the problem and won't tell you so, just keeps taking your money. Been there done that; spent hundreds. After three vets, we are not blessed with a good one. (09/24/2007)


By Krystal

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