Many dogs suffer from ear problems and if you’re worried your dog might be suffering from one, we’re here to help. Read on… Symptoms of ear problems in dogs With most of the common ear problems your dog may experience, there are a few symptoms they are likely to be suffering from on their outer ear (the flappy bit) such as: Head shaking and face rubbingA bad smellDischarge, dirt or excess waxHot to touchSwellingItching and pain Some other symptoms your dog may be suffering from could indicate an inner ear problem. These include; a head tilt, a loss of balance and flickering eye movements. Don’t panic though, some of these ‘symptoms’ are also normal behaviour for your dog, a cute little head tilt can be a reaction to what you are doing or saying to your dog and not an internal ear problem so, if your dog is displaying more than one of these symptoms and you think they may be suffering from an ear problem, take them to the vets to get their ears checked over. Common ear problems There are some super common ear problems your dog may experience which are also easily treated including: Ear infectionsSkin allergiesEar mitesEar injuries These are also somewhat preventable if your dog is regularly groomed, especially in the wetter months. For example, a buildup of wax and debris in your dog’s ears is the perfect environment for ear mites – they love dirtiness – and as these can be easily picked up from another dog or out on a walk, it is important to keep on top of the cleanliness of your dog’s ears. Of course, you may not want to bathe your dog after every single walk, especially in the colder months, so a gentle ear wash solution that can be squeezed into your dog’s ear to help loosen ear wax and remove dirt with a cotton wool ball might be helpful. Other common ear problems that may need a little more of a helping hand include: Aural haematoma – a blood blister inside the earflap which causes swelling and hot red skinVestibular disease – this affects the inner ear and causes a loss in balance, similar to vertigoNon-cancerous and cancerous ear growths, polyps and tumoursMore serves allergies reactions which cause swelling throughout your dog’s body as well as with their ears Again, if you are worried about your dog possibly having one of these common ear problems, a trip to the vets will help; to either ease your mind or get your dog the help they need. How to prevent ear problems The best way to prevent ear problems in your dog is to check and clean them regularly and keep them dry. As we mentioned above, you can use a gentle ear wash at least once a month, massaging it into your dog’s ear and removing the residue with a cotton wool ball. When checking your dog’s ears, look at both the outer (flap) and the inner parts to make sure there is not a build-up of dirt, scratches, parasites or discharge. Sniff your dog’s ears too, there shouldn’t be an odour. And, after every wash, swim or even walk in the rain, make sure to dry your dog’s ears too. For more advice, all Broadreach members have access to free veterinary advice 24/7. If you have any questions about our all-natural, vet-approved supplements including our gentle ear wash, you can also contact us by calling 01223 855857 or emailing us at email@example.com.