Experienced and professional animal trainer provide their insights in answering this question :
A. I would highly recommend seeing a veterinarian. It does not sound good and may be infected. The dog probably will need the area cleaned and antibiotics prescribed. It may be a hematoma or something else. There are many things that could be going on and a vet will need to look at it.

How to Identify Common Pet Problems ?

Our sources include academic articles, blog posts, and personal essays from experienced pet care professionals :

Some of the main causes include: ear infection, allergy, insect bites, build up, ear mites and ear hematoma. It is important to keep a close eye on it and contact your veterinarian right away so that your pet can get the proper treatment.
Antibiotics, steroids and topical treatments are usually prescribed for ear infections. But these only treat the symptoms temporarily … and they can have nasty side effects. Luckily there are natural options to use instead. Popular remedies include green tea, calendula, apple cider vinegar, and oil of oregano.
Bacterial ear infections are treated with antibiotic eardrops and sometimes oral antibiotics. In resistant cases that do not respond to routine treatment, a culture may be performed to find out the exact type of bacteria and the proper antibiotic treatment.
Fungal ear infections can produce very dark brown or almost black discharge that smells pungent. Fungal or yeast infections will require antifungal ear drops to clear up. Ear mites: Ear mites are extremely contagious parasites that lodge themselves in your dog`s ears and feed off the wax and oil there.
Your dog should recover within one-two weeks if their ear heals without complications. However, their exact recovery time will vary depending on what caused their aural haematoma to develop in the first place.
Causes of dog ear hematomas

The tissue of the ear flap (or “pinna”) is very thin, and when it`s injured, the blood vessels can break. The space between the ear cartilage and skin fills up with blood and fluid, causing the ear to swell rather quickly, and forming a balloon-like nodule on the dog`s ear.

While taking your pup to the vet is always a safe bet, some easy and effective home remedies can help relieve their discomfort, like wiping their ears with cider vinegar, coconut oil, or tea tree oil. However, as with any ailment, it`s best to invest in the best pet insurance for dogs for added peace of mind.
Oil of oregano is a natural antibiotic. To use if for your dog`s ear infections, add one drop to ½ oz of warm pure aloe vera juice. Clean the visible parts of the ear with a cotton ball soaked in the mixture. Apple cider vinegar can help reduce the itch and discomfort of an ear infection.
Healthy ears don`t have an odor. Make a habit of sniffing your dog`s ears, starting when they are just a puppy, so you know how they smell normally. If their ears smell yeasty or downright stinky, it`s likely that a bacterial or yeast infection is brewing.
If an ear polyp goes untreated, it often interferes with an ear`s normal function, resulting in waxy buildup and chronic infections. This can be smelly and painful for your pet. The physical presence of the polyp can be irritating, and, if in the right location, interfere with hearing or balance.
A waxy, yellow, or reddish-brown ear discharge can also be a sign your dog has an ear infection, which can be a result of allergies, mites, polyps, overproduction of ear wax, excessive bathing or swimming (which can leave too much moisture in the ears), or other problems.
If your dog has a yeast ear infection you may notice one or more of the following symptoms: Red or brown waxy discharge in the ear. Itching, scratching & pawing at the ear. A cheesy or musty smell coming from the ear.
The cost of ear hematoma surgery for dogs can range between $300 and $2,500 due to the various factors that are taken into consideration with the procedure, including the location and size of the hematoma. It`s important to check with your dog`s vet on what you`ll be charged for before agreeing to the surgery.
If left untreated, the hematoma may be slowly reabsorbed but the associated inflammation will cause damage to the surrounding ear tissues resulting in a distorted, cauliflower-shaped ear that could obstruct the ear canal. Aural hematomas are very painful and, for an affected dog`s welfare, should be treated promptly.
In some cases — especially mild cases — an ear infection may heal on its own without any particular treatment. With a bacterial infection, the most common treatment is antibiotic ear drops and drugs to help manage pain.
It is unusual for an ear hematoma to pop, but it occasionally happens. Your dog probably felt some immediate relief – the pressure from the fluid build-up has been removed, and the blood can drain.
The most common symptom of an ear hematoma is a visible bulge or swelling on the inside surface of the ear flap. In some cases, however, there may not be any external sign that an ear hematoma is present and it can only be detected by your veterinarian during a physical examination.
Antibiotics (e.g., amoxicillin-clavulanate, enrofloxacin, clindamycin, or cefpodoxime) will be used for a bacterial infection for a minimum of six to eight weeks. If the infection is fungal, an anti-fungal medication (most often itraconazole) will be prescribed.
Although an ear infection is not a veterinary emergency, it does require medical treatment to resolve and can be painful for your pet. Ear infections commonly lead to inflammation of the outer ear, a condition called otitis externa.
It`s important never to give paracetamol to your dog unless your vet tells you to – it can be very dangerous if it`s given incorrectly.” Claire explains that you should always head to your vet for advice, including if your pup accidentally digests a painkiller.
There aren`t any home treatment options for ear hematomas in dogs because they`re usually due to an ear infection, which requires a vet visit, Dr. McCullough says. You should never take matters into your own hands — ever. “Pet parents should not try to release the trapped fluid themselves,” she says.
Smelly earwax may occur if you have an infection, something stuck in your ear, or a medical condition. Treatment can depend on the underlying cause of the odor. Earwax is a normal and an important part of keeping your ears healthy and clean. However, smelly earwax can indicate a problem.
Infection. Infections often cause a cheeselike smell. Bacteria, yeast, and fungi are most often to blame. This is because they like warm, moist places.
The fluid may have a foul odor and will look different from normal earwax (which is orange-yellow or reddish-brown). Pain and pressure often decrease after this drainage begins, but this doesn`t always mean that the infection is going away.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

Q. One of my pet’s ears seems very irritated. What I can use to clean it with?
ANSWER : A. Ear Irritation can be caused by a number of things ranging from allergies, ear infections or even mites. Dirty ears can also cause irritation and problems. Knowing the type of problem is best for figuring out how to treat it.

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.

Q. I have two problems with my 16 yrs old dog: he’s constipated and has a ear ache. What can I use to relieve these?
ANSWER : A. Constipation is a common problem in dogs that can be due to a number of things. However it is a good idea to make sure the constipation is not actually diarrhea, as some dogs can strain after a bowel movement, making it look like such. If constipation is present, adding a little pumpkin puree or plain yogurt to the diet can help make digestion easier and make stools easier to pass. However if symptoms do not resolve after a few days, it is best to speak with your vet.

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.

Q. My dog is having ear problems. I have had her at two vets and they can not seem to find the cause. Can you help?
ANSWER : A. For a pet with chronic ear issues I would recommend checking her thyroid levels. Hypothyroidism can be a cause of chronic ear infections.

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.

Q. Dog has dry ears and it itches him. Any recommended soothing lotions??
ANSWER : A. I will answer this question as if you are speaking of the inside of the ears (not the external). Most dogs ears aren’t dry unless they have other skin issues such as skin allergies, which can be seasonal or year around and caused by many different things, such as foods, environment, dust, grass, pollen, and products (shampoos, perfumes, etc). Check in the ears for waxy build up. The ears should be clean of any wax and dry. If they have build up, I would take a cotton ball, and soak half of it in a dog ear cleaning solution. This solution should be made specifically for dogs, and your local vet would most likely sell the appropriate brand.

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.

Q. My cat has a small bump by his ear and his ear is swollen what can I do. Cant afford to take to vet until after the first of the year
ANSWER : A. If you are in financial difficulty, there are ways of still getting your pet treated by a veterinarian. Ask if they take Care Credit and apply online. This is a credit card specifically for medical, dental, and veterinary expenses.

Call a local animal shelter and ask if they have a low-cost pet clinic that works with people with limited incomes or call a college of veterinary medicine in your area and ask about a low- or no-cost veterinary care program.

GiveForward and Youcaring.com are crowd funding websites that help you raise money to help take care of your pets

Harley’s Hope Foundation is an organization that ensures low income pet parents and their companion or service animals remain together when issues arise.

Many breed rescues and groups have specials funds available for owners who need financial assistance, such as the Special Needs Dobermans, Labrador Lifeline, and Pitbull Rescue Central.

Banfield Pet Hospital has its own programs for owners that can’t afford their pet’s care.

The Onyx & Breezy Foundation has many programs including helping people with medical bills. They are a good resource for information.

Brown Dog Foundation provides funding to families with a sick pet that would likely respond to treatment, but due to circumstances, there is not enough money immediately available to pay.

Some groups help with specific disease, such as Canine Cancer Awareness, The Magic Bullet Fund, Helping Harley Fund, and Muffin Diabetes Fund.

The Pet Fund and Redrover.org are great sources for help to care for your pet.

The Humane Society website has many links to other organizations that help with veterinary expenses.

Q. My dog keeps shaking his head at night and is very anxious acting? We’ve cleaned his ears and putting ear drops in hasn’t helped?
ANSWER : A. It sounds like ear canal infection. I am not sure if you used ear drops to clean ears (they do not contain antibiotics) or ear drops from your vets to treat ear infection. In case you used ear cleaner only you should take your dog to your vets to get antibiotics. If you are using antibiotics drops and there is no improvement your vet may recommend taking a swab from the ear to check what bacteria, fungus or parasite is responsible for the infection and then pick the most effective medication.

Q. How do I know if I am losing my cat. She is 8 and weighs about 20lbs. She is having issues breathing and I don’t have any money to take her to the vet
ANSWER : A. Your cat really should be seen by a vet. Her weight may be the only thing causing her breathing problems, but without an exam, there’s no way to know for sure.

If you are in financial difficulty, there are ways of still getting your pet treated by a veterinarian. Ask if they take Care Credit and apply online. This is a credit card specifically for medical, dental, and veterinary expenses.

Call a local animal shelter or college of veterinary medicine in your area and ask if they have a low- or no-cost veterinary care program.

GiveForward and Youcaring.com are crowd funding websites that help you raise money to help take care of your pets

Harley’s Hope Foundation is an organization that ensures low income pet parents and their companion or service animals remain together when issues arise.

Many breed rescues and groups have specials funds available for owners who need financial assistance, such as the Special Needs Dobermans, Labrador Lifeline, and Pitbull Rescue Central.

Banfield Pet Hospital has its own programs for owners that can’t afford their pet’s care.

Feline Veterinary Emergency Assistance (FVEAP) works with seniors, people with disabilities, people who

have lost their job, good Samaritans who rescue a cat or kitten who may need financial assistance to save a beloved companion.

The Feline Veterinary Emergency Assistance Program is a nonprofit 501 (c)(3) organization that provides financial assistance to cat and kitten guardians who are unable to afford veterinary services to save their companions when life-threatening illness or injury strikes.

God’s Creatures Ministry helps pay for veterinarian bills for those who need help.

IMOM is dedicated to insure that no companion animal has to be euthanized simply because their caretaker

is financially challenged.

The Onyx & Breezy Foundation has many programs including helping people with medical bills. They are a good resource for information.

Brown Dog Foundation provides funding to families with a sick pet that would likely respond to treatment, but due to circumstances, there is not enough money immediately available to pay.

Some groups help with specific disease, such as Canine Cancer Awareness, The Magic Bullet Fund, Helping Harley Fund, and Muffin Diabetes Fund.

The Pet Fund and Redrover.org are great sources for help to care for your pet.

The Humane Society website has many links to other organizations that help with veterinary expenses.

Read Full Q/A … : Vetinfo

Q. One my friends dogs has a yeast infection in his ear. Is their anything they can try at home to cure this. They are not working and have no money.
ANSWER : A. Cleaning out the ear 2-3 times daily with an over the counter pet ear cleaner may help to clear up the infection. Some pet stores do also carry over the counter versions of medications to treat yeast and may contain ingredients such as Tea Tree Oil – a natural fungal and yeast killer.

Treatment of ear infections typically involves cleaning the ear twice daily, then applying the medicated ointment to leave in the ear in between cleanings. A period of 7-10 days is usually enough to clear up the infection with medication. However, if the infection continues past 10 days, or appears to worsen with treatment, your friends should seek veterinary care.

If your friends need help with affording veterinary care, several services are available such as http://www.carecredit.com/vetmed/. This article from the US Humane Society may also help in finding funding for care: http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/resources/tips/trouble_affording_veterinary_care.html