Pet Tips Text

Skin Problems Part Four

Hello I’m Dr. David Roberts from Manchester West Vet Hospital here in Ellisville, Missouri.

Wanna follow through with our allergy problems.

We’ve talked about skin problems and I want to focus on ears in this particular episode. What we find with ears and this is from everybody this is from board certified veterinary dermatologists, these people study these patients and what they have told us from the literature in the articles is that allergies are the number one reason for ear problems.

Everyone thinks well I got a cocker spaniel I've got a Labrador retriever it’s got floppy ears they have ear problems because of their conformation.

Some of that’s true but, a lot of it is because they do have allergies. When we see a young dog with ear problems that are chronic we almost have to suspect that it is a food allergy and when we start thinking about food allergies we start talking about as we’ve spoke about in the last episodes is foods that are from what we call hydrolyzed ingredients, where they take and ingredient and they break it up in to small pieces or we talk about foods that are made from novel ingredients such as this food which is made from fish and potato and they make foods that are made from kangaroo and potato and kangaroo and oats and theirs a lot of different products out their but those are important.

When I look at a patient and we’ll kinda look at cruiser here we’ll look at his ears we’ll take our otiscope and we’ll look inside of those ears and we’ll see if their red, inflamed, waxy, irritated, his actually really look pretty good today, its also tickly when I do this to any patient so they kinda move away but cruiser did pretty good there his ears look fine, but we see some dogs that come in that have significant ear changes and inflammation and wax and odor and irritation and their itching and they can even get to a point where that ear canal is starting to get closed down.

There’s many different things we can do with the ears, one is ear cleaning, this is one of the many ear cleaners out there it doesn’t matter so much what ear cleaner you use just want to make sure that you use it.

The way that we use it is we basically, this is a model of an ear this shows the dogs ear flap, shows the canal and that’s the ear drum, if I put this product in there its going to run down to the ear drum it wont go any further, ill go ahead and push and prod on this you’ll hear a squishy sound and then we let the dog go ahead and shake it out then well come back with paper towel with cotton with any Q-Tip perhaps if there’s a lot of wax in the crevices here we’ll go ahead and clean that ear out but ear cleaning is not the whole story once a dog gets an ear infection.

A lot of times they have a secondary infection with a yeast and yeasts are everywhere there in the yard there in the room there in your house its ubiquitous its everywhere.

So what we actually have to do is then come in with a medication to actually treat that ear problem and get rid of the yeast and kill the bacteria that might be hanging around in there and also to make sure the we’ve killed all the critters if you will, but we also want to make sure that were decreasing the inflammation to that ear, but when we look at ear problems its important to remember that a lot of times its related to an underlying cause, it could be the inhaled allergen as we talked about in the last episode it could be the food allergen as we’ve spoken about it can be bottom line those things are causing it.

So when we look at skin and we often think its an allergy and remember that ear, that ear canal is lined with skin, that’s what it does so what we tell folks is that look for the bottom line try to solve that problem and to think that you’ll have a much better problem as opposed to just using medications and medications.

So remember the ear is probably the most common area for us as veterinarians to see allergic problems and that’s where we try to come in with food changes, dietary changes, we come in with the ear cleaning and even sometimes the blood test for inhaled allergens such as your mold, pollens dust mites and that type of thing.

I'm Dr. David Roberts from Manchester West veterinary hospital and I thank you for your time.

Located In Ellisville, MO

We're located just off Manchester Road (Hwy 100)
one mile West of Clarkson Rd.

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