Cleaning your husky’s ears may be something you aren’t sure about. How often you need to clean them? How to clean them? This article shows you step-by-step the safest way to clean your husky’s ears, and how often you need to do it.
How Often Should You Be Cleaning Your Husky’s Ears?
This is where the confusion usually starts! I receive many people asking me how often they should be cleaning their husky’s ears and are confused by the information out there.
How often should you clean your husky’s ears? The answer is that it depends. If you take your husky out for his exercise in muddy trails and wet rivers, he’ll typically need to have his ears inspected and cleaned more frequently than if you live in a dry, dust-free environment.
Fortunately, the ears of a Siberian Husky are nearly always pointed upright and open. At first, you may think this allows more dirt in, and that may be true. But this design allows for greater air circulation and encourages dirt to leave the ear.
Dogs with floppy ears typically suffer from regular ear infections and a build-up of muck.
Start by checking your husky’s ears once per week. You may actually only need to clean them once per month, but it’s proactive to be checking frequently.
Only clean his ears when you can see visible muck. Too much cleaning will lead to irritation and even ear infections.
How to spot a dirty ear:
When you inspect his ears, the insides should be of a light pink, skin color without brown patches.
If it’s time to clean his ears you’ll see clusters of dark spots in various places. These dark spots are a general build-up of dirt, muck, and wax and should be removed.
What’s The Best Dog Ear Cleaning Solution?
You’re going to need some kind of solution to properly clean the muck out from your husky’s ears, so which one should you go for?
Most ear cleaning solutions fall into three categories:
1) Ear cleaning solution – With Alcohol/Hydrogen Peroxide
2) Ear cleaning solution – Without Alchohol/Hydrogen Peroxide
3) DIY Ear cleaning solution
Ear cleaning solutions WITH alcohol or hydrogen peroxide ❌
Professional veterinarians typically advise against using these solutions. Although many people do use them, there’s just no need for that kind of strength. The harsh chemicals or alcohol will, of course, do a good job of cleaning, but it can leave his skin very sensitive and especially dried out. It’s just not worth that risk when you have options to go for without the use of alcohol or hydrogen peroxide.
Cleaners with hydrogen peroxide or alcohol can cause irritation within the ear canal, especially if the canal is inflamed or ulcerated.VCA Hospitals
Ear cleaning solutions WITHOUT alcohol or hydrogen peroxide ✔️
If you still want a shop-bought option then I recommend opting for one that doesn’t use harsh chemicals or alcohol. Fortunately, there are many options out there that use only natural ingredients and prove to be just as effective.
If you’re interested in buying one, I really recommend this option from PetPost which is a natural coconut oil solution. It avoids the use of alcohol or harsh chemicals. And it’s received many great reviews on Amazon which you should check out.
DIY Ear cleaning solutions ✔️
For the “do-it-yourself” lovers out there you can make an effective ear cleaning solution that’s 100% natural and only uses two ingredients you likely have.
- Regular white vinegar, or Apple cider vinegar (preferred)
That’s it! It’s preferred to use organic apple cider vinegar, but if you don’t have any you can opt for regular white vinegar.
The solution is as simple as making a 50/50 solution, then be sure to mix it thoroughly.
How to Clean Your Husky’s Ears
Let’s get into exactly how you can clean your husky’s ears in the safest way possible.
First, It’s important to know what you shouldn’t do.
To avoid permanently damaging his hearing or irritating the sensitive parts of his ears, you should not stick anything down his ear canal, or squirt solution directly into it. This means no Q-tips!
Fortunately, with huskies having such open ears, they’re particularly easy to see and clean. It should only take a matter of seconds before you know if his ears need to be cleaned or not. After gently folding them back, you’ll get a good look inside to see if there is any muck or dirt present.
What you will need:
- Ear cleaning solution
- Cotton ball
How to clean your husky’s ears:
Method 1 – Cotton Ball
- Use the solution to soak the cotton ball
- Squeeze out the excess solution from the cotton ball
- Use one hand to gently manipulate the ear so you can access all surfaces
- Use the damp cotton ball to wipe clean all accessible dirty areas
Method 2 – Solution Squirts
- Gently squirt a small amount of solution in the ear
- Do not press the bottle deep down into the ear near the canal. Remain close to the surface
- After squirting, with one hand, fold the ear over and gently massage it around in a circular motion.
- After 10-20 seconds let go and allow your husky to shake his head, clearing the excess liquid
Always attempt to wipe dry his ears after any method you follow
This is a great video to check out. This shows you exactly how to use the cotton ball method. It does include a Q-tip but in a safe way. It automatically starts at the correct point.
What If Your Husky Resists Having His Ears Cleaned?
The method is very easy, but what’s harder is keeping your husky still and calm while you try to clean his ears.
If your husky resists having his ears cleaned the following tips should help significantly.
Introduce the solution bottle beforehand
This is a clever trick that can be applied to any item your husky isn’t comfortable with. Your husky may be resisting this process because the bottle is freaking him out. It’s very common for husky’s or any dog, to be suspicious of new items.
If he’s familiar with the cleaning solution bottle and what it looks like, he’ll be less nervous around it, and this will make it a lot easier to use.
The next time you’re playing with him on the floor, get the solution bottle and sit it next to you but keep playing with him and his toy.
If he wants to sniff and inspect it, that’s great, offer him a treat, then resume playing with his toy.
Don’t let him become too fixated on the bottle. Every now and then pick up the bottle and perhaps even touch his head with it. Put it back down, offer him a treat and continue playing.
Little moves like this will build positive associations with the bottle. Before long, he’ll actually get excited and happy when he sees the bottle.
Pick a good time to clean his ears
Timing can make or break your ear cleaning efforts. It’s a much better idea to try cleaning his ears when he’s calm and naturally tired.
This may be after you’ve taken him out for his exercise, or in the evening when he’s sleepy anyway.
Avoid trying to clean his ears early in the day or before exercise. He’ll have his full energy and be extremely alert. He will find it much harder to remain still and calm if he has all of his energy.
Distract him with a tasty treat while you clean
If all else fails, this will always work. The peanut butter plate.
Take a dinner plate and smear a thin layer of natural or reduced salt peanut butter around it. Peanuts are safe to give to dogs and nearly all of them go absolutely bonkers for it.
Offer the plate to your husky while he’s laying down. For the next 5 minutes, the only thing that matters in his life is that plate! seriously. This gives you a free pass to clean his ears. Just be careful of his caloric intake!
When to See Your Veterinarian
There may be a time when you need to seek professional help from your veterinarian.
The methods described above are perfect for general low-level cleaning and maintenance.
But it’s not suitable for severe issues like ear infections or extremely clogged ears. In this situation, you will need to visit your vet to have his ears professionally cleaned.
Signs which could indicate an ear infection:
Source Central Texas Veterinary Hospital
- Head shaking or frequent tilting
- Loss of balance
- Scratching of the ear area
- Brown, yellow or bloody discharge
- Odor coming from the ear
- Redness, swelling or scabs forming in or around the ear
- Rubbing the head along the floor
- Walking in circles
- Unusual eye movements
- Impaired hearing
If you see any of these signs, you should inspect his ears and consider taking him to your veterinarian. It’s not advised to try tackling ear infections or more serious issues at home.
So there you have it, the guide to safely clean your husky’s ears. Remember to frequently inspect his ears and keep them as clean as you can. If you’re unsure about anything, always consult your veterinarian.
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The advice given in this article is for educational purposes only and does not constitute pet medical advice. Before making any decisions that may affect the health and/or safety of your dog, you should always consult a trained veterinarian in your local area.