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Discussion Starter #1
I noticed a couple of weeks ago that Shasta was tilting her hear and shaking on the one side. I figured maybe she had something in her ear and looked at it closely, nothing visually wrong with either ear. She was fine when I touched the one ear but shook her head whenever I even gently rubbed the other. I cleaned both ears with special cleaner the vet gave me and things seemed to get better. Since then she's been slightly cocking the one ear and shakes her head more than normal but nothing too bad. Then tonight she was going nuts with the shaking and tilting again. Once again I looked, definitely no obvious infection but the ear that has been bothering her was red/irritated looking like she has been scratching it when I'm not looking. Is there some kind of mite or other common ear problem that could be the problem? She has never had an ear problem before but had a really bad case of vestibular disease last May, I hope it is not that happening again.:(
 

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Poor Shasta :( I would take her to the vet.
 

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If it is an ear infection, monistat (yeast infection cream) can quickly ease the irritation and kill the infection... (but this isn't in place of a vet diagnosis ;) )
 

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I just recalled another thread from a couple of months back. Same symptons - only in one ear. The op was doing home treatment like you are doing, couldn't see anything, but the ear was red and the dog kept scratching it. Then the dog's nails started to fall off. That's when she took her dog to the vet. Turned out to be some type of bacteria infection and got to the nails from the scratching of the ear. The dog was prescribed antibiotics and also a cream.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I got her an apt to go to the vet Monday, wanted to go today but they closed early. I'll keep an eye on it but she HATES having her ears messed with.
 

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Also, good that you and your vet are versed in the vestibular syndrome. A lot of vets will state stroke and advise to put the dog down, as the 1st week is sometimes no change. Sometimes it is caused by something (such as inner ear infection) and sometimes idiopathic (no known cause). The recovery time could be up to 3-4 weeks....
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The vestibular episode was horrible, I thought she had a stroke and was done for. The night before we went on a walk and she was prancing and happy. The next morning she had pooped/peed herself, threw up, couldn't move, and her face looked all crooked like she had a stroke. My vet said right away it was very unlikely that it was a stroke and to just take care of her and watch for improvement. She would not eat/drink on her own for two weeks. She started showing very minimal progress and after about a month was almost 100% better, just had a slight head tilt. I really wish more people, especially vets knew about Vestibular episodes in older dogs because I bet a lot of dogs get put to sleep thinking it's a stroke and they won't get better.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
it was just a minor yeast infection in the one ear. She got some ear drops to put in, it had already got a lot better just from cleaning it daily. So glad it's nothing serious.
 

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To keep the yeast at bay, you could wipe out her ears a few times per week (as a preventive) with 50/50 mix of Raw Organic Apple Cider Vinegar and purified water. Organic ACV contains the "Mother Tincture" (you'll see it floating around in the bottle) which has medicinal properties such as being anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and anti-viral.

Additionally, you could use the 50/50 mix as a rinse after a bath to combat yeast issues. If yeast is a reoccurring problem, Organic Apple Cider Vinegar can be added full strength to her food.
50-75# = 2 teaspoons per day
75-100# = 1 Tablespoon per day

Feeding a non grain food could also be a consideration.

Moms:)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the advice, I think I'll start adding the apple cider vinegar to her home made wet food that I make for her. She's also being switched over to grain free kibble, TOTW. Does the non organic cider vinegar do anything or does it absolutely have to be organic? Not sure where to get the organic form.
 

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You can buy the organic very reasonably from Vitacost (and probably Amazon), if there's no natural food store near you. I store it in the fridge.
 

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Thanks for the advice, I think I'll start adding the apple cider vinegar to her home made wet food that I make for her. She's also being switched over to grain free kibble, TOTW. Does the non organic cider vinegar do anything or does it absolutely have to be organic? Not sure where to get the organic form.
For the medicinal properties, it needs to be raw organic ACV.
As Magwart said, you can purchase it locally from a health food store, or Whole Foods type store or the web. An example is Braggs: Bragg Live Foods, Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar, Bragg Liquid Aminos,Systemic Enzymes, Bragg Live Organic Food Products, Patricia Bragg, Paul Bragg, Bragg Organic Olive Oil, Bragg Salad Dressings, Bragg Seasonings, Bragg Health Products

Since your dog has a history of yeast, you may want re-think the TOTW because of the amount of potato and other starchy ingredients. Some of their products also contain Brewer's Yeast. Could you feed just raw for about 8 weeks to see if it might help her? There are some some great commercially prepared raw food diets like Northwest Naturals or Bravo that are nutritionally balanced meals to take the guess work out of it if you are new to raw feeding.
"Starches are complex carbohydrates that turn into sugar when metabolized in the body. Do you know what yeast loves to eat? Sugar!
Starches are found not only in rice, corn and wheat, but in potatoes, peas, sweet potatoes – all of those ingredients found in grain-free goods." Grain Free Dog Foods: Solving Yeast And Skin Issues | Dogs Naturally Magazine

You may also want to consider adding a probiotic/digestive enzyme like Sunday Sundae or Digest All Plus to aide her gut.


Moms:)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I'm a little afraid of drastically changing her diet at this point in her life(she will be 15 in less than a month). She always had an extremely sensitive stomach, always had loose stools, threw up a lot, and the food combination I've been giving her the past 2 years has made her stomach issues disappear. Adding a probiotic and a little organic ACV to her diet sounds very safe and do-able though and we will definitely try it out. I think Routine ear cleaning should help too, I honestly never cleaned her ears before because every time I checked them they looked clean and she didn't itch or anything.
 

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Our rescue just back from Vet today who pulled a large foxtail out of her ear. Same symptoms. Have it checked first before you start all these remedies.
 

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Thanks for the advice, I think I'll start adding the apple cider vinegar to her home made wet food that I make for her. She's also being switched over to grain free kibble, TOTW. Does the non organic cider vinegar do anything or does it absolutely have to be organic? Not sure where to get the organic form.
Astrovan,
I agree.....Don't rock the boat at 15 years old. Just keep feeding what you've been feeding.

Wiping out her ears with Organic ACV won't bother her stomach, and can help keep the "yeast" under control, but you may want to hold up on putting it in her food if she has such a sensitive stomach. Normally ACV can even aide digestion, but in her case I'd keep her on the same food routine that you said that you've had her on for the past 2 years. Also, start out very slowly and small doses of the Digestive Enzymes if you choose to give that to her.

The only reason I mentioned the food was because you said she was being "switched over" to TOTW. That food has caused diarrhea in some dogs. It's also made by Diamond who had the HUGE recall about a year ago due to unsanitary conditions in their factories and salmonella.

Good luck with your Senior Sweetie!
Moms:)
 

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15 in less than in a month - that is wonderful :) I can attest to the routine ear cleaning as a preventative measure. I started it weekly after my aussie had an ear infection at age 4 - he never got another one. I started Sting as a pup and he will be 9 next month - no ear infections.
 
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