By Janice Jones |Last Updated 05-04-2021
If you've gone the D.I.Y. route, this Shih Tzu ear cleaning video will help show you how easy it is to do this task at home.
Of course, you can use what you learn on any dog breed, but is especially helpful for all those dogs whose ear hair continues to grow inside the ear canal and may need removing from time to time.
Most dogs do not like having ear hairs pulled from their outer ears, so they must be conditioned and trained to stay still while you remove a couple hairs at a time.
A few good treats, lots of praise and a few human hugs and kisses will help even the most resistant of dogs.
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I always add a small amount of ear powder before attempting to remove hairs.
It provides just enough friction to allow me to pluck hairs out by my fingers, but also makes removing hairs with a hemostat much easier.
Once you've added a little powder to the ear, you can normally pluck out hairs using your fingers. If you don't want to use your fingers, a pair of tweezers or hemostats works very well. You will want to assure that your dog holds still, as it is easy to grab a bit of skin instead of hair in a squirmy puppy or adult dog.
Hemostats are useful for other things like removing ticks so they might make a good addition to your grooming box.
After removing the excessive ear from the canal, you may want to clean the ear using a ear cleaning solution. One of my favorite products is a foaming ear product called, Foaming Ear Cleaner from Animal Dermatology Laboratories.
It's true that this breed has it's over-abundance of ear problems and not all of it is due to dirty ears. Allergies, especially seasonal allergies causes plenty of discomfort in this breed especially when it comes to ears. If your dog is continually scratch, whimpering or crying from pain due to ear problems, it is time to call your vet. The constant irritation due to itchiness can result in ear infections. Ear infections may be best treated by your local veterinarian.
There is a distinctive odor that accompanies ear infections. I know it's gross and difficult to ask, but get up close and smell your dog's ear. Do you detect an odor? If so, a phone call to your vet is the next thing on your to-do list. Your dog needs help from a professional.