How do you treat a chronic ear infection in a Shih-Tzu without visiting the vet every time ?

I have a 3 year old Shih-Tzu who has recently developed a chronic ear infection. I first noticed it about 3 months ago and took him to the vet right away and he was prescribed two antibiotics, one topical and one oral. The infection was cured, but returns every few weeks with signs of "ear wax" on the outer ear. I want to treat this without incurring monthly vet costs. Please advise.

Asked by Member 561654 on Jan 22nd 2008 in Illness & Disease
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It's best to keep the ears clean. Ask your vet what's a good cleaner they can recommend. Also, when you are bathing him, put a little cotton ball in his ear to prevent water from getting in it.

Member 497436 answered on 1/23/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


This can be a sign of something else going on. Maybe an allergy or something. Try changing his diet and of course keep his ears cleaned.

~Sophie~ answered on 1/23/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


Are you sure it's an infection and not just dirt? You didn't say what kind of infection he had- do you know if it was yeast or bacteria? Or mites?

Typically, you need to be SURE to use the ear meds and oral antibiotics for the full time prescribed. If you gave the meds for the full 10-14 days and it reoccurred, I'd go back to the vet, and when they give you meds, be sure to go back at the end of the treatment and make sure the infection has cleared.

If the infection clears fully and then reoccurs again, look at allergy-free foods and/or ask the vet if there's anything "odd" with the shape of your dog's ears that could be contributing to the problem.

Finally, flush the dog's ears with either a commercial dye-free, fragrance-free ear wash or just some vinegar water. Fill the ear canal, massage the ear, let the dog shake his head, and then thoroughly wipe the ear with several cotton balls. Make sure that there's not a lot of hear in/around the ear that's getting in there.

Lola answered on 1/23/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


My dog also had chronic ear infections. My vet suggested taking the dog to a dog allergist, or taking all beef out of his diet. I stopped giving him all beef products and his ears are much better. He gets a flare-up once in awhile, but nothing like before.

Member 561784 answered on 1/23/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer

Lacey Luv

You can use preventative treatment after the infection clears. All of our Cockers use Wonder Ear. It is a powder that is available online and in some pet stores. Once a week we clean the ear canals with dry cotton, unless we notice a build up, then we dampen with warm water and follow with a dry cotton ball. After the canal is dry, we sprinkle a light dusting of the wonder ear inside the canal. It has worked well with our dogs. Cockers are prone to ear infections and out of our 7 dogs, we have only had 1 ear infection in the 2 years we have used the wonder ear.

Lacey Luv answered on 1/24/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer