The canine and feline ear canal runs along the side of the face and at approximately the level of the jaw, then turns up. The exposed canal is what you see when you look into your pet's ear.
The dark and moist ear canal is an ideal environment for bacteria and fungus to grow, causing an ear infection.
Ear Infection Symptoms
Repeatedly shaking the head
Scratching ears or side of face
Red or tender ears
How to diagnose an ear infection
Your veterinarian will examine the ears by looking for redness, inflammation, scabbing, discharge as well as smelling for odors.
Next, the vet will look deep into your pet's ear canal with an otoscope to view the ear drum, look for infection, tumors, polyps and other abnormalities, inclining parasites.
What's causing the Infection?
Ear infections are commonly caused by an overgrowth of yeast or bacteria in the ear. Pets who swim, and who have allergies are prone to getting ear infections.
If an infection is suspected, your veterinarian will take a sample from the ears and look at it under a microscope to determine what is causing the infection.
Treating the infection
Once the source of the infection has been identified, your vet will prescribe medication that will work to clear up the infection. Ear cleaners may also be used to allow medication to work effectively.
It is important to have your pet's ears checked before the medication is finished to be sure the infection is completely gone.