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Cleaning your dog’s ears is an easy way to keep them clean and reduce his chances of developing infections. Infections are not only uncomfortable for him but they can also lead to serious issues like deafness. If your fur baby already has a yeast infection, using the right ear cleaner can alleviate the problem. You need one that has antimicrobial properties that can both kill and prevent the occurrence of the nasty candida virus. In today’s post, we will highlight some of the best dog ear cleaners for yeast in the market right now. But before then, let’s learn a few basics…
What Causes Ear Infections in Dogs?
Yeast infection (or any other type of ear infection for that matter) doesn’t just occur—there must be an underlying health issue that precipitates it. And one of the biggest factors that vets cite is allergies. Allergies in dogs are triggered by several factors, including foods, cleaning products, allergens in a dog’s environment etc. There are many other predisposing factors that may cause ear infections in dogs besides allergies, including:
- Suppressed immune system (especially in dogs with Cushing’s disease).
- Poor ventilation (particularly in dogs with big floppy ears).
- Poor conformation (for instance, narrow ear canals in pugs, Pekingese, and Shar-pei dogs).
- High moisture content (especially in dogs that love water or swimming).
- Foreign bodies
Why Ear Cleaning Is Necessary in Dogs
To properly treat yeast infection in dogs, you or your vet need to first clean the ear canal using appropriate ear cleaner. It doesn’t make sense to apply any kind of ear medication in your dog’s ears if it is filled with debris. Debris will not only prevent the medication from reaching the affected areas but also trap pathogens and provide a safe environment for them to thrive.
But to clean your dog’s ears properly, you need to choose the right cleaning products. Like any other doggy product out there, the market abounds several brands and choosing the right one can be a hassle if it is your first time. For starters, a good ear cleaner is formulated with ingredients that help break up wax build-up, dry out your pup’s ear canals, and help kill yeast and bacteria while still being gentle on your Fido’s ears. To make your work easier, we meticulously researched on the best dog ear cleaners for yeast and came up with this top 10 list:
The Zymox Ear Solution features natural enzymes designed to kill a variety of bacterial organisms. These include Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, MRSA, Preoteus mirabilis, and Streptococcus species. It is also effective against Candida albicans. No yeast can survive the ingredients contained in this solution. This cleaner is great for daily use as it does more than kill yeast. It also cleans the ears and eliminated wax, debris, and dirt. You have the option of choosing the version with the hydrocortisone (for comfort) or the one without. Either way, this formula is the best in the market right now.
With both antifungal and antibacterial properties, the BANNIX Dog Ear Infection Solution is great at combating yeast infections. It is manufactured to heal skin issues ranging from ringworm, infections, hot spots, wounds, itchy skin, and insect bites. Once you apply it on your dog’s ears, the potent formula will send all the microbes packing. This veterinarian formulation doesn’t contain anti-biotics or steroids, making it safe to use on all dog sizes. You can also use it on all organs including the eye area in case an infection develops over there. It doesn’t stain or release any odor and is therefore convenient and pleasant to use at home. For the best results, apply on the affected area two or three times a day until the infection has cleared.
On the third position, we have the VetWELL Dog Ear Cleaner. Made in the USA, you can trust this product to deliver its magic without hurting your dog. The solution removes build-up in your pooch’s ear canal and eliminates the bad stuff including dirt, wax, debris, and fluid. If you have a hard time getting those out of your dog’s ear, buy this powerful formula. Apart from cleaning the ears, VetWELL also prevents ongoing infections. It is made with Aloe Vera, which has been shown to have great benefits for a dog’s skin. This product is sold as odor-free but it comes with a gentle pleasant smell.
One of the affordable yet effective ear cleaners on Amazon is the Nutri-Vet Dog Ear Cleanse. It features a simple veterinarian formula that stops itching from eczema, fleas, fungal infections, and contact dermatitis. It is formulated by veterinarians, making it a great product for yeast infections. With the application of a small amount on your dog’s ears, it will work its way to the infection and get rid of it while cleaning and soothing the ears. It is made in the USA under strict regulations. Because of this, it is ideal for dogs of all breeds and ages, including puppies.
This Dog Ear Cleaner Solution from Strawfield Pets is an aloe-enriched precision formula designed to clean the ear canal and rid it of irritations and infections. Whether your dog needs help removing dirt, debris, and wax or requires a deeper formula that kills microorganisms, this product can do it for him. It is made to heal irritated, infected, and itchy ears and offer relief from parasites and ear mites. Being antifungal, this cleaner also guards against infections. It comes with a pleasant kiwi smell that is gentle enough for your dog while keeping his ears and the entire body smelling fresh and clean all day.
Here’s another great ear cleaner that only utilizes natural ingredients. The Vet’s Best Dog Ear Cleanse Kit is not just an ear cleaner. It is a whole ear cleaning kit including a wash liquid and an ear relief dry product. The former offers effective and fast relief from irritated, painful, and itchy ears while the latter keeps the ear canal clean. The wash liquid is effective against yeast infections and other microbial growths in the ear. Because it is natural, the formula is completely safe for puppies and adult dogs with sensitive ears. Sadly, it has a scent. If your dog has odor allergies, tread carefully before using this product on him. If he dislikes it, get other alternatives on this list.
The Virbac Epic-Otic Advanced Dog Ear Cleanser gets rid of excess debris and wax, keeps the ear dry, and prevents the growth of yeast. It is vet-recommended meaning it is effective in curbing microbial growth. The formula is so strong that it acts as some sort of a vaccine preventing the re-occurrence of infections. This is perhaps the reason veterinarians recommend it. The best part is that the formula is gentle and thus safe for dogs with allergies. It has a sweet citrus smell that will keep your home nice and fresh.
The active ingredients on the DechraTrizULTRA + Keto Flush for Dogs include the famous ketoconazole and tromethamine USP, Disodium EDTA dehydrate (TrizEDTA) both of which are effective for treating yeast infections in dogs. Together, they form a potent ear cleaner that eliminates dirt and debris from the ear canal while killing fungus and bacteria present there. Simply apply a drop on the ear, massage it gently and repeat. The solution neither stings nor smells and is thus ideal for all dog sizes.
One of the things to look for when shopping for a good ear cleaner is use of natural ingredients. The Vet Organics Dog Ear Cleaner fits that description. In it, you will not find harsh ingredient that will harm your adorable pooch. These include things like sulfates, GMOs, detergents, hydrocortisone, and other irritating chemicals. This is a big deal especially if you have a dog with allergies or one with sensitive ears. The formulation includes Witch Hazel Extract, Rosemary Extract, Vegetable Glycerin, Fingerroot Extract, and Mullein Leaf Extract. This amazing cleanser will also help restore your dog’s ear to its natural, healthy state by breaking down wax, dirt, and biofilms that may have accumulated in your pup’s ears.
Lively Pets Dogs Ear Cleaner and Ear Infection Treatment is a cleaner, antifungal, and disinfectant. The formula contains EDTA which has been known to reduce fungal and bacterial growth. It is your best friend in the fight against dirt, wax, irritations, yeast infections, and mites. The good news is that it doesn’t have alcohol, sulfates, and harsh chemicals that can pose a danger to your pet. On the contrary, it has aloe vera and other beneficial ingredients for your dog’s skin.
How Often Should You Clean Your Dog’s Ears?
This depends on your dog’s breed and/or his daily routine or activities. If you own droopy-eared breeds (like Basset Hounds and Cocker Spaniels) or a breed with a history of ear problems, then weekly cleaning may be necessary. Droopy ears tend to allow less air flow, allowing debris and moisture to easily get trapped in a dog’s ear canal, ultimately exposing the dog to yeast infections.
Dogs that like to swim or spend a lot of time in areas with high moisture contents may also require weekly or at least more regular cleaning because the excess moisture can predispose them to ear infections.
For other dogs, cleaning once every 2-3 weeks will suffice. But cleaning your dog’s ears too often is not recommended because it not only interfere with the normal self-cleaning mechanism that naturally exists in your dog’s ears but it can also cause damage to the ear canal or cause irritation that may result to other issues.
If you are still confused, it best to talk with your vet. He/she is best placed to recommend for you a cleaning schedule that will work for your pup’s needs.
Does your dog needs cleaning in the first place? Here’s how to tell
Apart from knowing how often to clean your dog’s ears, it is also imperative to know how to tell when your dog’s ears needs cleaning. Remember that over-cleaning your pup’s ears can cause irritation and infection.
Your dog’s ears need cleaning when:
- You see the dog shaking his head more than usual.
- You notice mild odor.
- Your dog’s ears look red and inflamed.
- Your dog’s ears smell yeasty and stinky.
All these signs indicate yeast infections, allergies, or ear mites.
How to Clean Your Dog’s Ears for Yeast
- Hold your dog’s head in a position that will allow the cleaning solution to flow into his ear canal. If you have a droopy-eared dog, gently lift his ear flaps to expose the inside of the ear.
- Wipe any loose grime from just inside the ear.
- Squeeze the cleaning solution to fill the ear canal.
- Message gently at the base of your dog’s ears for about 30 seconds. In most cases, you will hear squishing sound as the solution dislodges dirt and debris buildup.
Caution: Don’t allow the tip of the applicator to touch your pup’s ears as it can introduce bacteria.
- Insert a cotton ball in your dog’s ear canal and try to soak up the debris-laden excess fluid inside the canal.
- Repeat the above step as necessary, replacing the soiled cotton wool with a new one until your dog’s ear is dry and clean. Remember to discard the used cotton. Don’t re-use a cotton wool from one ear to another.
- If your dog doesn’t cooperate during the cleaning process or appears to be in pain, stop and consult your vet.
Important Tips for getting The Most of Cleaning Your Dog’s Ears for Yeast
- If you are cleaning your dog’s ears for the first time, introduce it gradually. Consider going through the motions of the process before actually applying the cleaner. Typically, you should ensure that your dog is as comfortable with the process as possible. If the dog appears to be unpredictable and bites, consider calming him down with his favorite treats. Alternatively, use a muzzle if necessary and only if he is properly introduced through desensitization.
- Before you start the cleaning process, ensure that your pup is relaxed. Ultimately, this makes the process seamless for both of you.
- Since the cleaning process can be messy, consider setting up an area for it. Most groomers recommend cleaning outdoors as there is natural light that can help you see tiny areas of the ear flap.
Yeast infections are insanely uncomfortable and painful for your dog. Why not get rid of the problem once and for all using any of the products mentioned on the list? Your pup may not spell it out but he will forever thank you for the move.
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Sable M. is a canine chef, professional pet blogger, and proud owner of two male dogs. I have been an animal lover all my life, with dogs holding a special place in my heart. Initially, I created this blog to share recipes, tips, and any relevant information on healthy homemade dog treats. But because of my unrelenting passion to make a difference in the world of dogs, I have expanded the blog’s scope to include the best information and recommendations about everything dog lovers need to know about their canine friends’ health and wellbeing. My mission now is to find the most helpful content on anything related to dogs and share it with fellow hardworking hound lovers. While everything I share is in line with the latest evidence-based veterinarian health guidelines, nothing should be construed as veterinary advice. Please contact your vet in all matters regarding your Fido’s health.