German Shepherds Forum banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My rescue GSD will not let me use ear cleanser; she shakes and squirms and I cannot get the cleaner in her ears. I understand positive reinforcement, and have tried treats, etc., but to no avail. Any recommendations?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,644 Posts
My rescue GSD will not let me use ear cleanser; she shakes and squirms and I cannot get the cleaner in her ears. I understand positive reinforcement, and have tried treats, etc., but to no avail. Any recommendations?
Use make up remover pads, put the ear cleaner on the pads and wrap around your finger, gently rub inside the ear.
Can I ask why are you cleaning the ears? I only do it if there is a reason, if I see dirt or there is an odor, if I notice her rubbing her ears. Unless there is an issue or infection there is little need to bother the ears. To facilitate easier cleaning I often use my finger or knuckle to gently rub inside the ears. I find evenings are a good time, when we are chilling and just relaxing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,171 Posts
If it is ear cleaner that comes in a plastic bottle with a pointy tip, put the dog on leash and either straddle the dog or hold the collar and kneel beside her with your arm under her neck and squirt the cleaner in the ear, filling the ear canal. Then massage the ear by folding the ear over the ear canal and massage the ear for about ten seconds and let the dog shake the cleaner out. You want to do this outside and have clean, damp washcloth in case some of the cleaner gets in her eyes when she shakes. It is much easier with two people. Then you can take some cotton and clean the ear out. It depends what type of cleaner you are using and the reason your are using it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,351 Posts
Treat the reason for the dirty ears. Most likely caused by allergies or mites.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Use make up remover pads, put the ear cleaner on the pads and wrap around your finger, gently rub inside the ear.
Can I ask why are you cleaning the ears? I only do it if there is a reason, if I see dirt or there is an odor, if I notice her rubbing her ears. Unless there is an issue or infection there is little need to bother the ears. To facilitate easier cleaning I often use my finger or knuckle to gently rub inside the ears. I find evenings are a good time, when we are chilling and just relaxing.
Thank you for your response. Yes, I only try to clean her ears when I see dirt, or because it has been so long since the last cleaning. I have tried the ear cleaner on a pad, but she can smell it, and see the pad coming, and then squirms. Fortunately, her ears are healthy (no smell, or severe itching), so ok for now. Last time her ear was bothering her, I actually had to sneak a syringe of ear medicine into her ear, which worked, but wish I could find a routine way of cleaning her ears. Oh well, she is just a challenge in that way. Thank you again!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thank you for your response. Yes, I only try to clean her ears when I see dirt, or because it has been so long since the last cleaning. I have tried the ear cleaner on a pad, but she can smell it, and see the pad coming, and then squirms. Fortunately, her ears are healthy (no smell, or severe itching), so ok for now. Last time her ear was bothering her, I actually had to sneak a syringe of ear medicine into her ear, which worked, but wish I could find a routine way of cleaning her ears. Oh well, she is just a challenge in that way. Thank you again!
Also, I forgot to acknowledge your suggestion about inserting finger or knuckle into her ear when relaxing, yes, I need to start doing that more, to facilitate the cleaning. Thanks again!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
If it is ear cleaner that comes in a plastic bottle with a pointy tip, put the dog on leash and either straddle the dog or hold the collar and kneel beside her with your arm under her neck and squirt the cleaner in the ear, filling the ear canal. Then massage the ear by folding the ear over the ear canal and massage the ear for about ten seconds and let the dog shake the cleaner out. You want to do this outside and have clean, damp washcloth in case some of the cleaner gets in her eyes when she shakes. It is much easier with two people. Then you can take some cotton and clean the ear out. It depends what type of cleaner you are using and the reason your are using it.
Chip, as much as I don't want to manhandle my dog, I think you are right, this may be the only way to get the cleaner in her ear, which is of course for her own good. Thank you, Allen.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,644 Posts
I need to clarify. I agree that if treatment is needed sometimes you just need to suck it up and get it done. But I prefer a less "confrontational" approach.
Shadows food allergies presented as hives and sores in her ears, which needed to be dealt with. In those instances I simply put her in the small bathroom and held her still. Like it or not.
But she accidentally got some beef one night and when the head shaking started I went to put her in the bathroom and she just put her head down and slunk in on her own. I never want to see my dogs respond like that.
So high value treats and desensitizing are priority. Address it before you need to.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,672 Posts
Also be sure the cleanser you are using doesn't hurt -- some of them are quite uncomfortable if there's any low-grade infection. Vinegar solutions can be VERY uncomfortable for dogs like that -- and once they experience that, you'll never have them cooperate with ear cleaning again, so I don't recommend using those any more. I really like the Zymox Ear Cleaner because it won't sting, doesn't require anything more than squirting in and massaging the fur outside the ear, then they shake it out.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
113 Posts
Sometimes you just have to push through things like this .... with patience.

It’s not unlike trimming nails. The first few tries may be stressful, depending on the dog. By the third or fourth try, you oughta be well on your way.

Not everything in life is treat, reward, etc.

Nolvasan Otic is a great ear cleaner and the bottle / applicator is exactly as Chip suggests.

Best of luck to you and your pup!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,351 Posts
I taught Seger to put his head down. Put your chin on my leg - reward. Try teaching that independently of the ear cleaning.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
6,970 Posts
I’ve just gotta put it out there... my first shepherd never had her ears cleaned in 13yrs. Another... I didn’t start cleaning (flushing) his ears until he was a senior and got a yeast infection.

No problems with either. Stock coat and long stock coat.

There are other breeds that require weekly or monthly cleanings (spaniels come to mind)... and sometimes people don’t realize when switching to erect ear breeds that it typically isn’t necessary for them.

edit: just saw that you’re dealing with allergies.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,644 Posts
I’ve just gotta put it out there... my first shepherd never had her ears cleaned in 13yrs. Another... I didn’t start cleaning (flushing) his ears until he was a senior and got a yeast infection.

No problems with either. Stock coat and long stock coat.

There are other breeds that require weekly or monthly cleanings (spaniels come to mind)... and sometimes people don’t realize when switching to erect ear breeds that it typically isn’t necessary for them.

edit: just saw that you’re dealing with allergies.
I'm right there with you. I had a Dane who only needed like an annual? ear cleaning, with natural ears. Usually do the fosters when they arrive, did Bud maybe twice, never Sabi's or Lex's.
But I am a terrible owner, I don't routinely trim nails either. Or bath. So maybe it's just me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
310 Posts
I'm right there with you. I had a Dane who only needed like an annual? ear cleaning, with natural ears. Usually do the fosters when they arrive, did Bud maybe twice, never Sabi's or Lex's.
But I am a terrible owner, I don't routinely trim nails either. Or bath. So maybe it's just me.
Awwww, it me. I trim Willow's nails when I hear them start scraping on the pavement on our walks; usually about once every 2-3 months. I have never cleaned her ears. Her "baths" consist of me letting her swim in the river. (I will bathe her, like with shampoo. Eventually. I have the shampoo at least.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,305 Posts
My vet switched us to Zymox Otic with 1% hydrocortisone. It is thicker, you just need a small amount and it can be used daily for 7 days to get rid of an infection, or once weekly for maintenance. You can find 1% at Chewy.com It has a glucose sucrose base, So be aware of that. My male can’t tolerate ear wash. It’s cold and he hates it. But he allows me to use Zymox.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Also be sure the cleanser you are using doesn't hurt -- some of them are quite uncomfortable if there's any low-grade infection. Vinegar solutions can be VERY uncomfortable for dogs like that -- and once they experience that, you'll never have them cooperate with ear cleaning again, so I don't recommend using those any more. I really like the Zymox Ear Cleaner because it won't sting, doesn't require anything more than squirting in and massaging the fur outside the ear, then they shake it out.
My vet switched us to Zymox Otic with 1% hydrocortisone. It is thicker, you just need a small amount and it can be used daily for 7 days to get rid of an infection, or once weekly for maintenance. You can find 1% at Chewy.com It has a glucose sucrose base, So be aware of that. My male can’t tolerate ear wash. It’s cold and he hates it. But he allows me to use Zymox.
I’ve just gotta put it out there... my first shepherd never had her ears cleaned in 13yrs. Another... I didn’t start cleaning (flushing) his ears until he was a senior and got a yeast infection.

No problems with either. Stock coat and long stock coat.

There are other breeds that require weekly or monthly cleanings (spaniels come to mind)... and sometimes people don’t realize when switching to erect ear breeds that it typically isn’t necessary for them.

edit: just saw that you’re dealing with allergies.
Good info, don't over worry on the cleaning, just do if necessary, got it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,171 Posts
Chip, as much as I don't want to manhandle my dog, I think you are right, this may be the only way to get the cleaner in her ear, which is of course for her own good. Thank you, Allen.
It is not really manhandling. You stay calm and try to comfort your dog with your voice and calmly stroking her, but you are physically restraining the dog. I reward with food after both ears are cleaned and it usually feels good to the dog having cleaner ears, especially if they were were bothering the dog at all. It is just not natural for a dog to let liquid be poured down his ears. Vets sell very overpriced ear cleaning solutions and there are very inexpensive recipes on line that include vinegar, rubbing alcohol and boric acid. But as I said, you have to watch when your dog shakes the solution out that it doesn't get in the dog's eyes or have a moist towel to clean they out. I have never had any solution go in a dog's eyes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
I do it this way also, lay dog on side, straddle,hold head and squirt in ear cleaner then massage, she used to struggle a lot at first but now knows what's coming, I think she actually has begun to like it.... and then looks for the treat after 😁
My pup ears need cleaning quite often, like every two weeks I see wax building up, is this not normal?
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top