Having to at times clean dogs ears is normal. Some activities can bring about the need more often especially when your GSD tries to bite at the wood chips being thrown from a chain saw. The chips themselves were easy to see and remove, most got caught in her hair, however there is dust and junk too. We are dry where I live and we have lots of dust. It gets into everything including my dogs ears so cleaning on occasion is needed. It's not always a dietary/health related issue, even a simple hike can introduce debris.