How to Identify Common Pet Problems ?
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One of the most common early signs of ear infection in dogs is heat tilt, which often goes along with head shaking. When your dog`s ear pressure builds up from the infection present there, they may try to tilt their head to one side to relieve that pressure.
Itchiness due to skin allergies. Irritant trapped in ear such as grass seeds, water or insects. Bacterial or yeast infection. Inflammation of ear canal.
Typical causes include moist ears, yeast and bacteria, ear mites, and allergies. Other signs of an infection you might notice: Your pup is constantly scratching their ears and shaking their head. Inflammation and redness inside their ears.
The scratching can become so vigorous that your pet scratches their eyes and the first thing you notice is a tearing, squinting, painful eye.
A yeast or bacterial infection in the ears is the most commonly diagnosed condition for which persistent head-shaking is a symptom. If your dog has been shaking their head excessively, check inside the ears for redness, discharge, or swelling.
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For plain dirty ears that do not have any odor, redness or leakage of discharge/debris, a simple over the counter canine ear cleaner can be used. Gently soak some cotton balls or a washcloth with the cleaner, and then use these to wipe out the flap of the ear and opening to the ear. Do NOT use Q-tips as these can become stuck or lodged in the curve of the ear canal and may cause injury to the ear drum.
If the ear is bright red or itchy without any dirt or debris in it, it may indicate an allergy. Sometimes an allergy medication can help provide relief in this situation. Your vet can give you the correct dosages of an over the counter allergy medication to use, or may recommend one specifically for dogs.
For infections and mites, changes to the ear such as bad smell or lots of debris and discharge, flecks of black or brown debris, or scabs and sores in the ear may be present. In these cases, it is best to have your vet take a sample of the ear debris to test for mites or infection. Your vet can then give you an ointment that is placed and left in the ear between ear cleanings. Most vets will then recommend cleaning the ears twice daily and then leaving in the ointment after for a period of ten days.
Ear mites ARE contagious to other pets, so if your dog does have them, it is best to treat any other pets in the house at the same time to prevent the mites from spreading around continuously.
Then I would recommend having a bacterial culture of the ear debris to ensure the appropriate antibiotic is chosen to completely rid the bacteria in there. If there is resistant bacteria, the ear will appear to get better at first but then once ear meds are stopped they will thrive again and cause a re-emergency of the ear infection. Also longer treatment may be needed, for example instead of 7-10 days, perhaps 14 days continuously.
If all else fails, I would recommend a skull radiographs to look for signs of a narrow ear canal and/or an inner ear infection which will require not only topical antibiotic ointments put into the ear, but also oral antibiotics.
Most ear infections are caused by moisture in the ears, narrow ear canals, hypothyroidism or skin allergies. Each one has to be gone through systematically.
It is best to have your pet’s eye examined by your local vet. They will most likely wish to place a stain in the eye that can check for damage such as cuts or scratches. An ointment can then be given to help reduce inflammation, pain and take care of infection.
Until you can get to the vet, be sure to not let your pet scratch or paw at their eye as this can make things worse. You can also use a warm wet washcloth to gently remove any debris and allow the eye to open some, providing relief. However, if symptoms worsen, or the swelling travels to the face, head or neck, it may indicate a serious allergic reaction which should be treated immediately.
For ear aches, it is best to have your vet examine the ear as many things including allergies, ear infections, mites and more can cause ear problems. If the ear is just dirty, then cleaning the ear gently with cotton balls or a clean washcloth and a dog ear cleaning solution can help. Do not use Q-tips as a dog’s ear has a 90-degree turn in it and placing Q-tips in the ear can cause damage to the canal or inner ear. However if the problem persists or cleaning does not help, it is best to seek care.
I would address any possible skin allergies, if they do not have any other skin issues, then looking inside the ears and cleaning with a good ear cleaner (should be alcohol free—because alcohol is very drying) If the ear scratching continues regularly then bring him/her into the vet to have a proper ear exam.
1. Purchase a cat scratching post or cat tree that is covered in carpeted or textured material. Place it in an appealing spot that your cat would be inclined to spend time (eg. in the sun). You can also place catnip on the scratching post or cat tree to make your cat even more interested in the new object.
2. You can utilize double sided tape on the ends of the furniture because you cat will not like the sticky feeling and will learn to not scratch in that region. Use the tape that has a lighter adhesive in order to prevent any permanent damage. Other materials, such as aluminum foil or bubble wrap can also be placed on the furniture to discourage the scratching.
3. Keep nails trimmed short by either learning to do this on your own at home or using a veterinary technician, or groomer. Nails can usually be trimmed every 6-8 weeks.
4. Redirect the unwanted behavior. If your cat begins scratching, use a favorite or new toy to distract the cat from the scratching. Give your cat positive praise for not scratching.
5. As a last resort you can use a spray bottle full of water to spritz your cat when he or she is scratching inappropriately at your furniture. Generally, cats do not like water and this will discourage them from continuing the behavior.
Have patience with your cat because it can takes time to understand this is an unwanted behavior and that furniture is not another toy for them to use. You can always consult your veterinary or veterinary behaviorist to help with ideas or further solutions to this problem.