In this guide, I am going to help you learn about the best oil for dogs ears. They include essential oils and carrier oils as well as other relevant oils which you can safely use to maintain your pet’s ear health. I’ll also review some brands of top oils that are safe for use in your pet’s ears.
Dog ear infections, especially in breeds with droopy ears, are the most common problems that require visits to the vet. In most cases though, dog ears rarely need any special care and attention. In fact; a little amount of wax is necessary to keep infections at bay.
That said; if your dog’s ear is reeking of a foul odor, it may be time to use the very best oil for dog ears. Oils are natural ear cleaners and the right one can even drown mites and mange and keep odor at bay by preventing waxy buildup.
Dog Ear Problems
Ear problems in canines can cause extreme discomfort. In most cases, you will notice a foul smell emanating from the ear.
Even if your dog is not showing any sign of discomfort, don’t overlook a foul odor from their ear. Clean the ear immediately with the recommended best oil for dog’s ears or get it examined by the vet.
Factors that Lead to Ear Infections in Canines
- Dog ear problems are usually brought about by food sensitivity or allergies. If that is indeed the cause, your dog might show other signs like skin hot spots, extreme itchiness, and excessive licking in addition to shaking its head.
- Yeast, bacteria and other environmental pathogens can also cause ear infections in dogs of all ages. Certain bacteria and viruses are already present on dog’s fur and skin. But in case of weakened immunity due to an illness, the canine’s natural healing mechanism fails to prevent the ear infection. This can lead to pus accumulation and severe pain. Many factors are responsible for bacterial or fungal infections in canine ears including dietary and environmental changes, stress, underlying medical issues, and more.
- Mites and mange especially love the warm and moist environment inside dogs’ ears. These typically affect young dogs.
- Allergens like grass and dust or burrs can also easily enter the ears of floppy-eared dogs causing infections.
- Hardened wax can also cause ear pain and foul odor. So you need to clean your pet’s ears from time to time, preferably once a month.
Symptoms of Ear Infections
As a pet owner, you need to be vigilant and interpret your dog’s behavior which may indicate ear infections. Dogs’ ears not only impact their hearing but also their balance.
Hence, even the most minor issues can lead to extreme discomfort in dogs. Some signs of ear problems in dogs include:
- Excessive scratching of ears
- Shaking the head over and over
- Tilting head to one side
- Otitis or ear canal inflammation can cause redness of the outer ear
- Foul odor
- Hematoma or swelling of the ear caused by a buildup of fluids and blood underneath the skin.
Oil for Dogs Ears
There are many safe oils for dogs ears treatment. Oils drown parasites like fleas, ticks, mites, and mange and also soothe, heal, nourish and moisturize the inflamed ear canal. The right oil eliminates bacteria and viruses and reduces pain caused by an ear infection.
Moreover, oils also balance the ph level of the ear making it unfavorable for parasites. The best essential oils for dog ears have antibacterial, antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties that eliminate germs, reduce pain and prevent waxy buildup. Certain soothing oils also cleanse the ear canal and prevent odors.
Top Carrier Oil for Dogs Ears
Cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil is extremely rich in anti-oxidants and essential fatty acids. This oil is easily absorbed by the dog’s skin where it is well tolerated. Many vets also recommend cooking using olive oil for dogs.
You can safely add olive oil in dog’s infected ears to drown the mites, lice, and mange. Olive oil can help you get rid of canine ear infections. Warm olive oil is also the perfect remedy for removing hardened wax inside pets’ ears.
Simply add a few drops of warm Olive oil inside both ears and gently massage them. Repeat application 3 times a day for at least 2 weeks to get rid of the odor.
Olive oil is one of the best ways to treat dog ear infections without harmful antibiotics.
Here is a testimonial [i]from a pet owner who used coconut oil to treat her pet’s ear infection:
“My 8-year-old German Shepherd was scratching her ears raw. The ears were looking red and inflamed. I began massaging her outer ears with coconut oil and added a few drops inside her ear canal. We also started adding coconut oil to her dry kibble.
She got so much relief afterward. I was just so relieved not to have to feed her those terrible antibiotics. Her ear infection got better within days and there was no more foul odor from her ears!”
Coconut oil is antibacterial, antiviral and anti-inflammatory. It prevents infections and also heals existing infections quickly. Warm up a bit of Coconut oil and add it directly inside both the dog’s ears after bath time.
Massage gently to spread the oil around. With regular use, you will notice less gunk in ears and there will be no more foul odor. Coconut oil is also one of the best carrier oils for mixing essential oil blend recipes for dog ear infections.
Sweet almond oil is another great oil for dog ears. It flushes out hard waxy buildup and cleans off foul discharge. This oil is also soothing and healing. For painful ears, mix a bit of Aloe Vera gel with Almond oil and flush out the pet’s ears.
Vitamin E oil is rich in antioxidants. Many vets prescribe this oil for internal use in dogs with skin, ear and other health issues, particularly allergies.
However, for certain ear and skin infections, you can use Vitamin E oil topically. Add a few drops of the oil inside the dog’s ear canal. The oil will drown the mites and mange. It will also soothe an itchy eardrum and prevent hardening of wax.
Evening Primrose oil has high amounts of Omega 6 essential fatty acids. This makes it anti-inflammatory in nature. Many top food brands for canines add this oil to their kibble.
However, exposure to air makes the oil rancid and also causes oxidization. So you can supplement the dog with Evening Primrose oil. Applying the oil topically to dog’s skin will prevent itching and flaking.
A few drops of the oil can also be used inside dog’s ears to prevent and treat ear infections.
Top Essential Oils for Dog Ear Infections
Lavender oil is a versatile oil that can soothe away many canine skin and fur problems. The calming aroma of Lavender oil calms dogs suffering from painful ear infections.
Mix a few drops of Lavender oil with Witch Hazel and add a few drops of the blend into dogs’ ears. Repeat this several times a day for a week or until the infection is cleared.
Tea Tree essential oil is one of the best oils for treating ear infections in dogs owing to its powerful antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties.
Add a few drops inside the dog’s ears neat to kill bacteria, prevent odor and stop ear pain. You can also dilute the oil with a bit of Olive or Coconut oil if needed.
Niaouli is one of the most recommended oils for dogs. It has anti-itch and anti-inflammatory properties.
Niaouli is especially recommended for dogs with severe allergies. It is also a nerve-calming oil.
Add a few drops of diluted Niaouli oil inside the dog’s ears to fight mange, mites and other ear problems.
Bergamot oil is considered one of the best oils for dog ear infections. It has anti-fungal properties and soothing effect.
Add a few drops diluted inside the ear canal to soothe away fungal and yeast ear infections.
In humans, Chamomile oil alleviates sleep issues and relaxes and calms the mind and body. For dogs, chamomile oil calms the nervous system and also provides an analgesic action.
Add a few drops inside the ears to stop ear pain. This must have oil for dogs ears is safe, gentle and nontoxic.
Geranium oil is a potent flea and tick repellent. It also has strong antifungal properties that make it an effective remedy for treating skin and ear infections.
Mix a few drops of this oil along with Chamomile and Lavender essential oils. Add this blend to dog shampoo while bathing and use this medicated shampoo to gently clean the dogs’ ears.
Also, add a few drops of the oil blend in its ear canal to prevent foul odor.
Here are some easy home remedies to clean dogs ears with essential oils...
Best Home Remedies To Prevent and Treat Dog Ear Infections With Oils
If your pup is showing signs of ear infection, use the following recipes to clear it away quickly and naturally. Most of these remedies work well in both remedying and cleaning the ears.
As such, do not restrict yourself to only using them when your doggy shows symptoms of ear infection. Feel free to use them for general cleaning and maintaining your dog’s ear health.
Recipe 1 - Almond Oil
Warm up a few teaspoons of sweet almond oil and add it inside both the ears. This remedy cleans and also soothes the pain away.
Recipe 2 - Olive Oil
Olive oil also works like Almond oil. It gently removes the causative factor of the ear infection and soothes, heals and protects the dog’s ears. Warm it before placing it inside dog’s ears for quick relief.
Recipe 3 - Tea Tree Oil
This is a great remedy to improve dog’s ear health. Dilute tea tree oil with a bit of water. Mix this diluted oil with Echinacea or Calendula tea and add a few drops of Lavender essential oil.
Apply the blend inside dogs’ ears using a dropper or a syringe.
Recipe 4 - Vitamin E and Olive Oil
Mix Vitamin E oil and warm Olive oil together and add a few drops of the blend inside the infected ear.
Repeat as needed for several days or until the infection is cleared.
Recipe for Waxy Buildup
- 5 drops Lavender essential oil
- 1 tsp Vegetable oil or witch hazel extract
Mix the ingredients and add the blend inside dogs ears and massage gently. The wax will come up to the surface. With regular cleaning, waxy buildup and odor will be eliminated.
Recipe for Dog Ear Mites
- 1 tsp warm Olive Oil
- A few drops of Peppermint essential oil
Mix the oils and drop the blend inside the pet’s ear canal. The oil will drown the mites.
Recipe for Painful Ear Infection
- 5 drops each Tea Tree, Lavender and Geranium oils
- 1 tbsp warm Coconut oil
Combine the ingredients. Dip a Q-tip in the blend to clean the inner part of the ear flaps.
Also, add a few drops of the blend inside your dog’s ear canal. Do this 2 times a day until the infection clears up.
3 Best Oil Ear Cleaners For Dog Ear Infections
Home remedies with essential oils and carrier oils are the best for cleaning dog ears and preventing and treating ear infections.
However, many pet owners prefer commercial formulas. So I am reviewing some of the best oil based ear cleaners for cleaning dogs ears and getting rid of waxy buildup, mites, and mange etc.
- Tea Tree oil
- Aloe Vera
- Smells great
- Useful for treating yeast infections
- Eliminates pain and odor
- Especially suited for dogs with floppy ears.
- You can use it on cats as well.
- Some pets don’t like the smell
- Caused a reaction in some pets-like breathing difficulties, confusion etc.
- Coconut oil
- Palm oil
- Eliminates ear mites
- Has a wonderful natural smell
- Suitable for use in kittens and puppies as well.
- Increased ear irritation in some pets
- Did not get rid of all the mites
- Contains Phenoxyethanol which may cause a reaction in some pets.
- Olive oil
- Chamomile essential oil
- Clove oil
- Aloe Vera
- The wet wash removes the cause of the infection while the dry powder keeps the ear moisture free.
- Useful for treating mites, yeast, and fungal or bacterial ear infections.
- Smells fantastic due to the Chamomile, Clove and other herbal ingredients.
- Some dogs hate it. The oil seemed to degrade their symptoms.
- Some pets actually experienced stinging sensation due to the clove oil.
- Caused allergic reaction in some pets.
Dog ear infections are very common especially in a humid climate, in dogs with floppy ears and ones that swim regularly. One of the most common signs of an ear infection is a strong odor. If your pet’s ear smells like an ‘old, wet tennis shoe’, it likely has a fungal infection.
On the other hand, if the smell is strong and sour, it is quite possibly a bacterial infection. Oil for dog ears help reduce gunk and also keep parasites at bay. Using the above home remedies, your pet’s infection will surely clear up within a week.
If however, your dogs’ ears still smell bad, then it is possible that it is suffering from a serious infection and might need prescription medicines to clear it up.