How Should One Clean A Dog’s Ear?

An ear cleaning plays a key role in the overall grooming of a dog. Some dogs need frequent ear cleaning as compared to others. It is more common for those dogs that are prone to ear infections frequently. This habitual cleaning process can benefit these dogs and can avoid ear infections. But one should always consult an experienced veterinarian before administering any of it by themselves.

Let us now find out when one needs to use a dog ear cleaner.

When does a dog need ear cleaning?

Some of the signs that indicate the need for ear cleaning are:

  • If there is a presence of mild or a strong odor in the ears of a dog, then it indicates the need for cleaning.
  • Another symbol is when the dog starts shaking its head more often than usual, which could be because of the presence of dirt or debris in the ear canal.
  • If the dog’s ear appears to be red and inflamed and even smells yeasty, then it could be another red signal.

Why should one use ears cleaner for dogs?

There are a few reasons why one should be using a dog ear cleaner. They are as follows:

  • Some cleaner comes with an antibacterial and antifungal substance that can help prevent ear infection
  • Some of the cleaners are very beneficial in wiping out the wax build-up or other dirt present in the ear
  • A cleaner that does not contain hydrogen peroxide or alcohol could also help clean a dog’s ear better.

What equipment do I need to clean my dog’s ear?

Cleaning a dog’s ear does not require any specialized tool or equipment. All you need is a good quality solution specially prepared for cleaning, some cotton balls or gauze, and a few treats to reward your dog for sitting quietly and patiently during the cleaning. One should avoid using any sharp-pointed object in the ears of a dog. This equipment can sometimes push the dirt and the debris deep into the ear resulting in infection. It is why one should entirely avoid any such tool for cleaning.

The apt dog ear cleaning solutions

You can browse and get a list of the variety of solutions available online for ear cleaning. Some are homemade, and some can be purchased from a local market. Some of these solutions are made up of harmful ingredients that can result in infection, while some don’t work at all. The solution approved by a veterinarian is always the apt one. Or, you could also consult a veterinarian before choosing a solution for your dog. Your veterinarian will always recommend a solution that would work best for your dog as per his/her specific needs.

Step-by-step guide for the cleaning process

  1. Compile all your supplies in one place and sit with your dog. Make the dog sit in the rear-end position between your legs
  2. Treat him with his favorite food to make him sit quietly
  3. Holding one ear flap vertically, which straightens out the ear canal, you can squeeze in the ear cleaning solution in the dog’s ear gently
  4. Keeping the hold of the flap vertically for 30 seconds with one hand, gently massage the base of the ear with the other hand. It will help in breaking down the debris present in the ear canal
  5. You will be able to hear a squishing sound when the solution dislodges the debris and other materials
  6. After a while, you can wipe out the debris from the ear canal with the help of cotton balls. Just ensure not to go too deep, not more than a knuckle
  7. After this, allow your dog to shake his head to eliminate the remaining solution and the debris from the ear canal
  8. Repeat step six once again, in the same manner, to remove the leftover debris and solution from the outer and the inner ear.

You can follow the same steps from one to eight for cleaning the other ear as well.


Dogs and other pets cannot express their discomfort and pain. But humans need to be sensitive enough to understand the uneasiness. Though the entire ear cleaning process is pain-free, if your dog faces any uneasiness or pain during cleaning, it would be wise to consult a veterinarian. They are experienced professionals who know how to deal with such situations much better than us. Do not keep using the cleaner or force your pet under any circumstances.

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