Our loved and adored pups are, unfortunately, not immune to the pesky and sometimes serious problem of an ear infection, or earache as we commonly call them. With summer knocking loudly on our door – a common time for earaches – we need to be in-the-know of what an earache actually is, how to successfully spot one in our little furry friends and how to treat them. As the Valley’s weather changes, this problem can become a little more than common, but we’ve got you covered. Let’s go over some signs to look out for and how to go about treating ear infections.

How do They Happen?

There are many things that can cause an earache in our canine companions, and it’s important to know that infections can begin in many different ways. We must know that a dog’s ear’s ecosystem already contains bacteria and yeast that can cause these terrible problems. When an imbalance of these bacteria or yeasts happen, problems appear. Here are a few reasons why our pup’s ears can overgrow bacteria and cause problematic infections:

  • Allergies – Food or environmental allergies like grass, mold, weeds or fungus can be the true root of an ear infection and must be treated specifically if this is the case.
  • Endocrine Disease – This reduces the amounts of thyroid hormones being created, which can cause infections in ears and skin. Signs that your pup is dealing with reduced thyroid hormone production are inexplicable weight gain, seeking warm places at a higher rate than usual or hair loss.
  • Foreign objects or bodies – A blade of grass, mites or foxtails (more common in northern Texas) can get stuck inside of our companions’ ears, causing havoc on their ear health.

Spotting Infections

Ear infections cause several signs that can be spotted. These include:

  • Constant shaking of the head
  • A higher level of scratching around the ear areas
  • Dragging ears on the ground
  • Ear canal inflammations, redness or swelling
  • Musky odors around the ear areas or ear canal
  • Having a fear of the head being touched


Treating an ear infection can involve oral medication drops under their tongue, antibiotic injections, food trials, skin testing for allergy detections or antihistamines. Even changing your dog’s diet under the advice and instruction of our vets can help.

Treating Pets of All Types

At the end of the day, if you think that your canine companion may have an ear infection, we recommend visiting us in Pharr, which is conveniently located near McAllen. Your four-legged companions deserve the best care, and an ear infection is not to be taken lightly as it can have many underlying issues. This summer, keep an eye out for the symptoms mentioned above, or contact us to learn more about this issue.

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