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crazydoglady99

Dog ear hair

12 posts in this topic

What a weird title :laugh:

 

This person is the proud new owner of a 3yr old Shihtzu (we've had him a few months). I have been reading grooming books from the library, and many say to pull out ear hairs.

 

This is news to me!

 

Anyway, we went to the vet recently and I asked about it - does it hurt them, do they get ingrown hairs etc. The vet actually pulled them out (but out the 'back' as I wanted his dew claws cut back), and since then, his ears are sore and have brown gunk. I am wiping them with salt water cotton balls, and applying Illeum drops.

I suspect all that muck has probably been trapped in there, and now has a way out- add to that some food sensitivities..

 

So.. I was wondering... I know there are a few dog groomers amongst us, is there any tips regarding ear hair that you might be willing to share?

 

Thanks all!

 

 

Edited by animallover99
Edit for my typo

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karen15   

I'm not a groomer, but have a cocker, so a breed prone to ear issues. I keep top third, inside and out, clipped short (#15 blade). Westie ears trimmed with #10

WP_20171104_011-1235x697.jpg

WP_20171104_009-1235x697.jpg

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That's some beautiful clean ears Karen!!!

 

Do you clip them yourself?

 

I like to run the clippers over him each fortnight (OCD perhaps!), just to keep him comfortable and matt free. 

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Tits   

Shihtzu have ear hair that you can pull out. (As opposed to spaniel type earhair  that doesn’t really pull out the same way, better to use little clippers and shave around the ear canal)

When I started grooming in the mid 80s we were pretty much instructed to pull every hair out of every ear any way we could, usually with artery forceps! Fast forward over the years and thinking has changed. I was never that happy doing it, but owners often pressured us saying the vet said we needed to do it. More recently about three or four years ago, people were coming in saying the vet says don’t pluck the ears. Yay! So I sent an email to the new veterinarian school here in SA and yes, they concurred that ear plucking is not something that should be done as rountine grooming. These days I rarely pluck ears. If I do, I use ear powder, which is super grippy and soaks up wax, and pull gently with my fingers. 

If your dogs ears are healthy, and not particularly thickly haired, then leave them well enough alone. 

If you feel your dogs ears are unhealthy, thinking now is to get them better before going and pulling the hairs causing more irritation, if at all. 

 

I groomed a lagotto today today whose ears were absolutely plugged with thick hair. Just as they should be for a water retriever!! 

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karen15   

Yes animallover, i groom them myself. I'm fussy clipping ears out. One stroke down and away from ear canal so hair doesn't fall in. Try to avoid going over them as risk of short hairs falling in would be pretty high I'd think. 

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Thanks Ming! Great advice, I really appreciate your time.

 

Good on you Karen, I think they look fantastic! Good suggestion re the clip direction. 

 

Thank you both. Very much appreciated.

 

(I'd post a pic of the little spunk, but I can't get it small enough from my phone)

 

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Dogsfevr   

Plucking is a whole topic,keep in mind the vets who often say don't do some form of plucking will be quick to tell you your dogs ears are bad  & needs knocking out .
Im a groomer & if clients don't want them plucked we wont ,some need some plucking as there way to thick & unless the owners are willing to do the work to ensure good ear health then plucking is fine.
We have had dogs in that we thought had sticks stuck in there ears & sent them to the vets asap .Hair that hadn't been plucked,where infected so vets prescribed drops,hair so impacted drops couldn't get down & set like concrete .

I wouldn't bother wiping with the salt water .
Depending on the actual ear issue aka ear mites (vet should have told you some drops prescribed are often useless,so make sure you keep on top of it ,also make sure the dogs teeth are good as bad ears & teeth can go hand in hand .Plucking can certainly allow such muck to get out which is a great thing
We have used Zymox ear drops which contains cortisone in severe causes & runs rings around what vets prescribe ,Buy it online but be sure to know what there earr issues are before using it aka like you have seen a vet

Edited by Dogsfevr
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Thanks so much dogs! 

 

The salt water was more of a 'cleaning solution' just to wipe over before massaging in the drops. To help get the gunk out I guess. I wipe around his eyes daily too, as he had very weepy eyes and red raw skin under (it's all cleared now).

 

The ears are clearing up, they look much much better today. I hope it is old gunk having been trapped and now finding its way out, it happened overnight after the plucking - I can't imagine it could be from anything else? 

I don't know what he was fed in his former home,  but his nutrscan showed a bunch of intolerances, many I had suspected as he was itching madly. Thankfully his teeth are beautiful, and he is very much enjoying chewing bones.

 

After reading the replies, I expect I will need to keep his ears plucked, at least in the short term. I can't take any chances there is something more going on (I'm terrified of hurting him!).

 

Our previous small white fluffy was a Maltese.. so similar,  yet oh so different to a Shihtzu! 

 

I have not heard of Zymox before. Thanks I'll keep it in mind if we have any further ear problems.

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Yes keep the ears plucked, a tiny amount of hair is ok but too much and it will hold in moisture causing bacteria and yeast to grow.

Also stops any drops you’re using from penetrating the areas necessary.

If you do it weekly the hair will stay loose enough to pull out easily.

Vets that say don’t pluck make lots of money from ear infections.

 

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