Well I'm going to be making an appointment with Riley's vet within the next week or two. His ears are bad again and I can't keep up with them.
I'm hoping someone has an idea or suggestion maybe what we could do next for him. Maybe a vet tech or someone with spaniels.
He's been getting ear infections since he was a few months old. He was tested for allergies last January and was found allergic to a number of foods and environmental factors (grass, trees, cat dander etc). He gets injections every 21 days by VARL for the environment and we try to avoid the foods he's allergic to (turkey pork rice yeast peas corn).
We have done everything the vet can think of for Riley's ears. He's had them flushed out twice, they went in once as a surgery behind his ear drum and cleaned out the infection there. He's been on every type of ear drop... otomax, mometamax, specially made drops. He's had steroids (prednisone) and other meds such as clavamox. I use swimmers ear after he swims. I clean them about every other day. I've tried NOT cleaning them for a week or more and that just makes it worse. We've tried a holistic vet. My vet is out of ideas and doesn't know what else to do for him.
I was thinking of re-testing his allergies. But the injections so far have done NOTHING to help him. With every treatment, his ears get better for a little bit, then get worse again.
LOR - Sorry to hear that Riley's ears are acting up again - I wish I had something to tell you - but we're facing the same thing with Charley. Let me know if you find something that looks promising....
Ugh, its so frustrating. I heard of a surgery that they take out one piece of the ear so that the air can circulate better. But I don't know much about it and would hate to put him through surgery again.
What are you using to clean his ears? A cleaning agent or a drying agent? I personally would go with a simple straight drying agent like rubbing alcohol. I would think if you use something that would cause his ears to 'dry out' as quickly as possible you'd be better off. Because the ear infections grow in moist environments, and rubbing alcohol would reduce that moisture.
With that in mind, I know that he loves to swim but I can't help but think that even with the swimmer's ear med you are giving him, his getting his ears wet/damp is still making matters worse.
I've been using this big bottle of cleaning solution the vet gave me. What you're saying makes sense because his ears are always greasy after I use it. I'll give the rubbing alcohol a try.
The vet had ordered Riley not to swim for about a month once. We tried it, the infections were just as bad, if not worse, than when he swam. However sometimes instead of the swimmers ear solution I do use this lemon & warm water solution... put it in, let him shake, then dry his ear out. (got the idea from a holistic dog health book). Maybe I'll do that instead of swimmers ear.
I've also thought of having his thyroid tested. But I'm not sure if he really fits the symptoms or not.
***Edited By: thelifeofriley on 1/7/2007 11:21:27 AM*** Reason: add
Poor guy! Im sorry hes having trouble again.Do you think it is because of where you live? I think I would move if it was.lol
anyways I would get him thyroid tested just in case.It isnt that expensive and the meds are cheap...we paid $15 a month with Bear.At least if you got him tested for it and it may turn out positive...that would be cheaper than another surgery or other things ya know?
We used to use OtiRinse to clean out Charley's ears - but the ear infections still came pretty frequently. The most recent that we're using is Dermapet Ear Cleanser. It really does seem to be more potent...
The OtiRinse has Alcohol listed as one of the first ingredients but the Dermapet has Acetic Acid and Boric Acid listed as the first 2 ingredients. I will say that when Charley's ear is sore... he doesn't cry with the Dermapet as much as he did with the OtiRinse.
You mentioned Mometamax - our first vet had given that to us for Charley's first ear infection.... but our new vet (whom I LOVE - he reminds me of a pediatrician) said that giving a dog Mometamax is almost cruel.... it burns the tender skin of their ear. He gave us Animax instead... it cleared up the ear infection in like 3 days - of course, we continued using it for the next 2 days - but it worked quickly AND it never got that burnt skin, flaky look - just turned to healthy pink ear skin.
So...while i have no idea what you can do to KEEP him from getting ear infections - I can tell you what's working for us to treat them.
Yeah a greasy feel is probably not what you want, it seems like that'd actually contribute to ear infections just because it wouldn't let moisture absorb into his skin, the moisture would bead up on the surface instead of evaporating (like water on a greasy pan,if you know what I mean).
just from what sonjavan said I'd guess that the product he uses has potential to be pretty effecive. Boric acid and acetic acid would probably be just as effective as rubbing alcohol, and have the extra benefit of lasting longer when it comes to killing bacteria.
***Edited By: Minniyar on 1/7/2007 12:02:23 PM*** Reason: add
I use tea tree oil to clean my dogsí ears. I would get his thyroid tested first. I have assisted with two lateral ear canal surgeries. They are not too complicated. They just cut out the section below the ear to remove the vertical portion of the canal to improve air flow. I of course would try everything else first. Our dermatologist only suggests them with extreme cases where nothing else works.
I used to have spaniels, and I am a groomer, I always found if I shaved the inside of the ear flap and used pulling power to get the hair out of the ear the ear infections would stop.....also since he has chronic ear infections you might need to be put on a long course of anit-biotic to get gone for good......
Most people just don't believe me when I say to use a powder that will deter anything from growing in the ear. Fungus, Bacteria, and Mites. Those are the things that will get your dogs ears flared up. I have used Thornit Ear powder for 3-4 years and my poodles DO NOT get ear infections anymore. I am sure there are similar peoducts out there, use a product like that or it. And you will be happy. One bottle only cost around $20 and I still have half a bottle a few years later. No shots, anti-biotics etc. You know how much that all costs. Keep the ears in check, lightly dusting 2x monthly and you are good to go.
Oh if its mites it will be brown wax I believe. My dogs don't get al that brown junk in their ears with the use of it.
***Edited By: Puttin510 on 1/7/2007 1:29:26 PM*** Reason: Add
I'm sorry you are still having trouble with his ears. What is the longest you have let him go without swimming? Have you tried NO swimming for a couple of months? I can't help but feel that has something to do with it. Good luck.