Ear me out
Every time my Labradoodle gets his ears plucked, he will shake his head non-stop and once, he even got an ear infection. Is this normal? If so, how long will it take for him to stop shaking his head? Meanwhile, do you have any suggestions to ease his discomfort?
Labradoodles have ear hairs growing from the insides of their ear canal. In order to prevent ear infection, it is recommended that excessive ear hair be removed to allow for thorough cleaning and ventilation.
Ear hair plucking is one way of hair removal. When hairs are plucked, the follicles may be left exposed and raw. It could lead to irritation and in some cases, bacterial infections. For most dogs, right after the plucking and cleaning, the skin inside the ears will be slightly red and sensitive, which usually eases within a few days. To ease this discomfort, you can flush your pet’s ears with a ear cleaner made with soothing ingredients at least twice a week. Use a clean cotton pad to swab the excess ear cleaning solution present in the ears after flushing.
For dogs whose ears are highly irritated or even infected after the process, owners can opt to skip the procedure and trim the ear hair with a pair of small round-tipped scissors instead. That way, the follicles in the ears won’t get triggered and excess hair can still be removed to promote ventilation and for easy cleaning.
Ideally, ear maintenance should be a weekly affair. Paw-rents can first determine if their dogs have hair growing from inside the ear canals. If they do, it’s recommended that you consult your groomer on the most ideal procedure of DIY ear hair removal as it could be a traumatic process if not done properly.
If the dog does not have ear hair growing from the ear canal or already had their excess ear hair removed prior, cleaning would help to maintain ear health and hygiene. Drip a few drops of ear cleaning solution along the side of the ear walls to allow it to flow into the ear canal; it’s gentler as compared to putting it directly into the ear canal, and results in a less stressful experience. Before the dog shakes its head in response, massage the base of the ear canals behind the ears to allow wax to break down. Once the dog shakes its head, the dirt will be expelled to the outer sides of the ears which can be cleaned away with cotton pads or buds.
EXPERT: DESMOND CHAN Low Stress Handling Certified Silver SKC/DGA A Class Certified Dog Groomer Certified Feline Master Groomer Principal Pet Groomer of Bubbly Petz