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To prevent infections and keep your dog’s ears in healthy condition, you will need to clean your German Shepherd’s ears regularly. If you haven’t attempted this yourself before, here is a step-by-step guide to help you out:
What Do You Need To Clean A German Shepherds’ Ears
- Commercial ear cleaner
- Cotton swabs or soft towel
- Bluntnose scissors
Commercial Ear Cleaner
Ask your vet for recommendations for the most efficient and gentle ear cleaner. There are plenty of home remedies, but commercial cleaners are often the safest option. If you wish to use something all-natural, make sure to check with your vet first.
The instructions may differ from one ear cleaner brand to another. Always read the instructions carefully before you use the product.
Cotton Swabs or Soft Towel
Large cotton swabs are often the best for this purpose. You should use these to wipe down your pup’s ears after applying the cleaning solution. You can use a towel but make sure it is soft. You should also be gentle when using a towel so you don’t accidentally scrape the skin.
Remember to never use Q-tips or similar cleaning supplies. There is an increased risk of jabbing the tool too far into the ear canal and causing discomfort or damage to your dog’s ears, so be on your guard.
Blunt Nose Scissors
This is not something you will always need. Some German Shepherds have very hairy ears and this can affect airflow. In turn, there is a greater chance of moisture build-up and infections in the ear canal.
If you notice that your pooch has hairy ears, trimming the hair around the ear canal can help. You don’t have to trim too much – just enough so that the ear canal won’t be obstructed anymore.
A Quick Note About Infected Ears
Before you start to clean your dog’s ears, take a moment to examine them. Look for redness, discharge, or an odd or bad odor emanating from them. You should also take note of whether your dog has been itching or pawing its ears or shaking its head from side to side.
The above symptoms are all indications of an infection or some other condition. If you notice these signs, don’t clean your dog’s ears. Instead, take it to the vet as it will require proper treatment to get rid of the problem.
If your German Shepherd has a history of ear infections or ear issues, examine their ears weekly. Catching the early signs can prevent the infection from progressing and can save your pooch a lot of discomfort.
How To Clean Your German Shepherds’ Ears
Here are the steps you need to follow:
Step 1: Find a Good Spot
This can be a messy process and it is best to clean your German Shepherd’s ears outdoors. Most pups tend to shake their head after the ear cleaner has been inserted. This can cause the cleaner to fly several feet.
If you are planning to do this indoors, you may want to consider laying out a few towels around your German Shepherd before getting started.
Step 2: Apply the Ear Cleaner
Hold your dog’s head straight – don’t do this by holding their neck but rather hold them still by placing a hand on top of their head. You may want to get someone else to do this.
Gently pull one of your dog’s ears upwards. This will expose the ear canal, allowing you to pour in the cleanser with more ease. Follow the cleaner’s instructions and tip the recommended amount into your dog’s ear canals.
Step 3: Clean Out the Ears
Massage the base of your dog’s ears. This allows the cleaner to sink in and take effect. This will also make it easier to wipe away the dirt.
Step back after this as your pooch will likely spray you with the cleaner if you aren’t careful!
Use a cotton swab or one side of your towel to gently wipe away the dirt from your dog’s ear. Remember not to go into too deep. When the cotton swab or portion of the towel is dirty, use a clean one or clean side of the towel. Repeat this until the swabs or towel comes away clean.
Step 4: Repeat the Process with the Other Ear
Once you’re done with one ear, you can get started on the other. If your German Shepherd is fairly calm, they may allow you to do this without any problem. If your pup is more sensitive about their ears, they may be fussy.
If your dog moves around too much, you may want to pause the process and try again on the other ear a little later. Just remember which ear you cleaned out.
Step 5: Trim the Hair
This step should always come last. Trim your dog’s ear hairs after they have both been cleaned. Cleaning is most important and the trimming can be done at any point.
As you trim your pup’s ear hair, make sure that none of it gets into the ear canal. You may want to bend the hairs forward when cutting them. Once you are done, use a soft towel to wipe the ear canal and pick up any stray hairs that may have fallen in.
This is what you need to know about cleaning your German Shepherd’s ears. They may be a bit fussy about the process the first time around but will get used to it soon enough.