Sniffing your American bulldog's ears is one of the best way to detect problems early. Normally a American bulldog's ears shouldn't smell foul in any way. If you see a dark waxy discharge this may be a sign of ear mites. On the other hand, if you see a pus-like discharge along with a foul smell this may be a sign of a bacterial infection. Allergies are also known to cause smelly ears in some American bulldogs. If you're new to this and are unsure, have the vet check your American bulldog's ears. Right after the vet gives your American bulldog a clean bill of health make sure you inspect your American bulldog's ears. This way you will learn how your American bulldog's ears should normally look and smell.
Is Your Breed More Susceptible To Bulldog Ear Care Problems?
Due to the warm, damp, and dark environment, as well as poor air circulation, your American bulldog's ear canal can be the perfect breeding ground for mites, yeast or bacterial infection. This is why, for certain breeds, home ear care is even more important. Some dogs may require routine applications of ear care products to keep their ears free of mites, yeast and bacterial infections.
Dogs with floppy ears, like American bulldogs, are more prone to ear infections because very little air flows into their ear canals.
If Excess Hair Is Ear Care Problem, Learn How to Remove It
If you suspect that excess ear hair is a problem, you may need to pluck the hair that grows inside your American bulldog's ears. This is a routine ear care task that can be performed at home and is much easier than it sounds. You will want to apply ear powder to the inside of both ears. Make sure that the hair is completely covered, especially at the base. Once the powder has dried start plucking a few hairs at a time with your fingers or a tweezers. Plucking just a few hairs at a time will be less irritating for the dog.
You may want to stop a few times to give your American bulldog's ears a good rub. Make sure you give your American bulldog lots of praise and a few treats too. Once all the inside hair has been removed, follow up by cleaning and inspecting the ears. If you are unsure about this dog ear care procedure, have your vet or a professional groomer show you how to do it.
Things You Should Know About Cleaning Your American bulldog's Ears
Some vets recommend that owners routinely flush their American bulldog's ears with warm water at the slightest hint of odor. Other home dog ear care cleaning remedies include mineral oil, hydrogen peroxide, or a combination of equal parts of vinegar and rubbing alcohol. If your American bulldog has open sores it's best not to use the vinegar and alcohol mixture because it causes a burning sensation.
If your American bulldog is prone to ear infections you may want to use an American bulldog ear care product that is specifically formulated to clean and dry up excess moisture in the ear canal. A dog ear wash containing Tea Tree Oil, which is also formulated to dry the ear canal is an excellent choice. Tea Tree Oil's natural antiseptic, antibacterial and fungicidal properties can help keep your American bulldog's ears problem-free.
It's also a good idea to use a dog ear-drying agent after bathing or swimming especially if your American bulldog's ears retain moisture and don't dry promptly. There are many good dog ear care products available for routine ear cleaning that will dissolve wax, remove foreign debris and dry the ear canal. There are also home dog care treatments available that will kill pesky ear mites and ear ticks.
A dog's ear canal is L-shaped. It descends vertically and makes a 90-degree horizontal turn before it reaches the eardrum. Even though your dog's eardrum is better protected than a human's, you should still proceed with caution when cleaning the ear canal. Many vets urge caution when inserting anything into the ear canal, especially cotton-tipped swabs. They can actually push dirt and foreign matter deeper into the ear if not handled properly. You can even lose the cotton tip in the ear canal.
Start cleaning the external part of the ear by swabbing inside the earflaps and all around the gnarled area at the entrance of the ear canal. If you choose to use a cotton-tipped swab you will need a long type since a dog's ear canal is much deeper than ours. If your American bulldog will tolerate it, gently and carefully swab the inside of the ear canal. A much safer method is to fill the ear canal with a dog ear cleaning solution and gently massage the outer ear. After a few minutes allow your American bulldog to shake his head to help clear the ear canal. If you're using a commercial bdog ear care product be sure to follow the instructions carefully.
Make Ear Inspections An Important Part Of Your Home Ear Care Routine
Checking your American bulldog's ears only takes a few minutes so make it a part of your American bulldog grooming routine. When your American bulldog's ears need cleaning, don't put it off. Remember, regular cleaning can prevent many common ear problems. If you think a problem may be developing that is beyond the scope of your home dog ear care routine, take your dog to the vet for a checkup immediately. An infection, if left untreated, can be very painful for your American bulldog and could even damage your dog's hearing.