Does your dog have dirty ears? Do you know how to safely clean your dogs ears? Here are a few tips...

Cleaning Your Dogs Ears

One of our dogs has chronic ear problems. His ears get dirty and if not kept clean, this turns into an ear infection so we clean his ears on a regular basis to avoid any ear problems.

dog ears,cleaning dogs ears How to Clean Dog Ears

Even though we give them lots of good scratches, when it comes to grooming, dogs ears are frequently the most neglected parts of their bodies. But their ears are also one of the most important areas to attend to.
Ear infections can be serious, and can begin easily if an animals ears are not kept clean.

Make sure your to keep your dogs ears in good shape by following these simple steps:

To Clean or Not to Clean

If a dogs ears have an offensive odor, or if he has been scratching them repeatedly, you should not remove the stuff that might have accumulated; whatever is there will be able to help your veterinarian determine the cause of the irritation and how to treat it.
If he's scratching, or if you're tempted to plug your nose while cleaning his ears, you should see your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will take a swab of the substance for examination.

Before you start your scrubbing, make sure you've set up your workspace. You should have your all your supplies set out and ready to go:

  • cotton balls
  • mineral oil
  • cleaner — a commercially prepared ear cleaner with a low alcohol content is best.
Wash your hands thoroughly so you don't introduce any infectious particles to your dogs ears.
You may want to work with a another person; your friend can provide a distraction while you clean the ears.

Gently wipe out your dogs ears.
Once you've determined that your dogs ears are just dirty and not full of mites or an infection, you can remove the dirt.

Using a cotton ball moistened with mineral oil, gently wipe out the inner surface of the animals earflap.
Using another clean and moisten with mineral oil cotton ball, clean out the part of the ear canal that you can see. Stop when you feel resistance — don't try to stick the cotton ball any farther into the ear than it should go.
Repeat this procedure on the other ear.
Be sure you remove any foreign matter, whether it's dirt, bugs, or just waxy buildup.

When you finish, be sure to praise your dog. Give him some love and let him go on his way.


While cotton swabs are a natural choice for cleaning human ears, you should not use them on animals. Not only are they less efficient, they can be dangerous. If an animal is startled and jerks his head while you are cleaning his ears, the cotton swab could get jammed into his ear canal, causing all sorts of pain and distress.
Using cotton balls is much safer; they're much softer and less likely to get stuck in the animals ears.

A Note on the Ears of Cats

Since cats are very meticulous about their hygiene, your cat probably won't need to have his ears cleaned.His ears should be checked regularly and if you notice he is scratching his ears, or if his ears have a bad smell, you should have your veterinarian check it out.
Don't remove any substances because your veterinarian will need to take a swab of the substance to diagnose the cause of the infection.