Can Witch Hazel Treat a Dogs Ear Infection?

using witch hazel to treat a dog ear infection

Witch hazel can be used to cure and prevent ear infections in dogs. However, to avoid dry ears, use witch hazel that has been made specifically for animals. To cure a dog’s ear infection, squirt some witch hazel on a cotton ball and clean from the inside out. Don’t squirt witch hazel directly into the dog’s ear. 

Witch hazel is known for its powerful medicinal properties. But did you know witch hazel can help fight ear infections in dogs?

Many dog owners are seeking natural solutions to their dogs’ health problems. A widespread health problem that dogs experience is ear infections. They affect every breed, but particularly those with floppy ears. 

An ear infection is typically treated with a vet visit and expensive medications. However, witch hazel is a natural and cheaper solution that MAY cure and prevent ear infections. 

This article will discuss how to spot an ear infection, the causes of ear infections, and how to cure and prevent them with witch hazel.

How To Spot An Ear Infection

Frequently inspecting your dog’s ears will help you detect and prevent ear infections. But what does an ear infection look like? 

You might be able to spot an ear infection before even looking in the dog’s ears. If a dog’s ears bother him, he will make that clear by shaking his head, pawing at his ears, or rubbing his ears on the floor or furniture. He will also move away when you try to rub his ears. Any sort of irritation or sensitivity of the ears could be a sign of an ear infection.

However, your dog may not show any apparent signs of pain or discomfort in the ears. This is why checking your dog’s ear frequently is essential to preventing ear infections. 

One obvious sign of an ear infection is a yellow, brown, or bloody discharge. The skin of the ear may also be red and swollen.

However, it’s not just about what you see. What you smell can help you determine whether or not your dog has an ear infection. 

A dog’s ear doesn’t just look gross during an ear infection; it smells gross too. When you lift your dog’s ear, you may detect a putrid odor. Although dogs’ ears never smell pleasant, the odor of an ear infection is hard to miss.

What Causes Ear Infections?

Ear infections are common in dogs because so many factors can cause them. Below are some of the most common causes of ear infections.

Water

Water is the most common source of ear infections. If any water gets trapped in your dog’s ears, it creates a moist environment that bacteria and yeast thrive in. 

Water can get trapped in your dog’s ears when they are being bathed or going for a swim in a pond or pool. 

If your dog has floppy ears, he is at a greater risk of an ear infection simply because his ears are more likely to trap water inside. To prevent an ear infection from trapped water, dry your dog’s ears after they get wet.

Allergies

If your dog’s ear infections don’t clear up with a regular cleaning routine, allergies may be at fault. 

Allergies to environmental factors, such as pollen, or food (such as chicken, soy, or beef) can cause ear infections. 

If the ear infections don’t clear up with regular cleaning or use of witch hazel, take your dog to the vet to see if allergies are the cause.

Numerous Other Factors

Other factors contributing to the frequency of ear infections are genetics, wax build-up, lack of ear hygiene, foreign objects in the ear, and scratches or irritations.

One of the best ways to prevent ear infections is to check your dog’s ears weekly. Infections can form quickly, so this is an essential precautionary step. 

It is also important to treat an ear infection as soon as you notice it. Prolonged infections can cause permanent damage to your dog’s ears. In extreme cases, an ear infection can burst an eardrum and cause permanent hearing loss.

Using Witch Hazel In Your Dog’s Ears

Most dog owners will take their dog to the vet at the first sign of an ear infection. The vet will typically prescribe expensive medication to clear up the problem. 

There is nothing wrong with this, but the cost can quickly add up, especially if your dog is prone to frequent ear infections. 

Using witch hazel is a natural option that can save you a lot of money in the long run. The product is natural and safe for your dog, but you must make sure you are using it properly. 

You should look for pet-specific witch hazel. Witch hazel should only be used once or twice a day on your dog. For cleaning the ears, witch hazel should be squirted onto a cotton ball, gauze, or soft rag rather than directly into the ear.

Despite being safe for topical use, witch hazel can be toxic to dogs if ingested. High doses can cause kidney or liver damage. 

Keep the bottle away from your dog when not in use and only use witch hazel for external issues. If your dog has ingested any witch hazel, take them to the vet right away.  

How To Prevent Ear Infections With Witch Hazel

The best way to prevent an ear infection is to clean your dog’s ears regularly. Checking your dog’s ears once or twice a week is recommended. 

You should clean your dog’s ears as soon as they get dirty. However, you don’t need to clean your dog’s ears every time you inspect them, as some wax is good for the ear.

To Clean Your Dogs Ears:

  1. Squirt some witch hazel on a cotton ball or a gauze square.
  2. Use the gauze to clean from the inside out. You can put a few drops in the ear if that works better, but squirting a lot of any liquid into a dog’s ears can be uncomfortable, if not painful for the dog.
  3. Allow your dog to take a break to shake his head every once in a while.
  4. Always monitor your dog’s reactions to see if you are doing anything that is hurting him. Though it’s important to clean his ear, you also want to make sure you aren’t causing him any pain in the process.

How To Cure An Ear Infection With Witch Hazel

For curing an ear infection with witch hazel, the process is similar. Get a bottle of witch hazel, soak up a cotton ball or gauze and get cleaning. 

While it may be tempting to use a cotton tip applicator (also known as a Q-Tip), the risks are too great. These applicators can push the infection deeper into the ear, causing bigger problems. The tip itself could damage or traumatize the inner parts of the ear, creating problems much worse than an ear infection. A cotton ball or square gauze should be more than suitable for this task.

After cleaning the infection and removing all that “gross gunk”, make sure to have some witch hazel touch the skin of the ear through a clean gauze. 

The skin of your dog’s ears will probably be pink, inflamed, and itchy. Witch hazel reduces inflammation and prevents moisture from building back up again, preventing the infection from returning.

Witch Hazel is a Great Natural Product

Witch hazel is a great natural product for cleaning your dog’s ears. Ear infections are annoying for humans and painful for dogs. It can be challenging for owners whose dogs frequently get ear infections, making multiple vet visits and spending a lot on expensive medications. But witch hazel is an excellent natural cure for your dog’s ear infections, and the best part is it won’t break your bank.

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