How to take care of your cat's ears?
If dogs are known to have fine hearing, know that cats are even more efficient! Indeed, your little feline is able to perceive more sounds than a dog, and of course even more than you! As you will have understood, a cat's ears are very important elements.
Although they naturally clean themselves on their own, your cat's ears may be prone to deposits of foreign bodies and bacteria, requiring your intervention. However, be aware that cleaning kitty ears is not like cleaning human ears, it is the same for another sensitive organ, the nose : you must scrupulously follow very specific steps.
In the rest of this article, you will find all our advice as well as our tips for properly maintaining the ears of your little furball.
When should you clean a cat's ears?
Cat's ear canals have a self-cleaning mechanism, which means your cat's ears clean themselves, with no need for you to intervene. However, this is only valid if there is no foreign body such as hair or debris in the animal's ear. Indeed, a narrow L-shaped duct, the cat's ear, in addition to being the site of accumulation of earwax, can also be the place of deposit of all kinds of impurities (hair, dust, bacteria, etc. ).
Excessive accumulation of all of these can cause inflammation and many ear infections. This is why you must take the trouble to inspect your little feline's ears weekly, and to clean them in the event of the presence of foreign bodies or to treat them in the event of illness (scabies, ear infections, spikelets, pus, etc.).
How to clean your cat's ears?
Considering the configuration of your cat's ear, which is totally different from that of the human ear, it is obvious that you should not clean the ears of the cat like yours : you have to follow a very specific procedure. And what's more, you are not going to use just any product!
What product to use for cleaning the ears
To clean the ears of your little feline, you will need lint-free cotton, and especially a suitable ear cleaning solution. As for the lint-free cotton, you can use makeup removing pads. The product to be used for cleaning should not be chosen at random, because it must not only be able to dissolve the earwax accumulated in the kitty ear (the solution must be lipophilic), but in addition it must have antiseptic properties. .
In any case, it is strongly recommended that you contact your veterinarian, who will be able to advise you on the best solution for your little hairball and explain to you in detail for the first time.
Cat Ear Cleaning Procedure
First, gather the materials you will need: makeup remover pad, ear cleaning solution, not to mention treats to reward your cat at the end.
- After immobilizing your cat, firmly hold your cat's ear upwards and insert the tip of the solution vial vertically into your cat's ear canal. Then spray the product at the prescribed dose.
- Gently massage the base of the ear between your thumb and forefinger so that the product spreads properly in the ear and acts correctly, then release your cat, who will soon shake his head.
- Once this is done, use the lint-free cotton to clean the inside of your cat's ear canal, until it is clean and dry. Above all, do not use a cotton swab under any circumstances, this could irritate the mucous membrane of the ear canal.
- Repeat on the other ear and reward your pet with a good treat at the end. Thus, your cat will over time associate cleaning his ears with something pleasant and not like torture.
Note that the sooner (preferably from an early age) a cat has gotten used to having its ears cleaned, the easier it will be when it is an adult.
What are the signs of ear disease?
If you observe any of the signs below it is highly likely that your cat is suffering from ear disease, these symptoms help suspect cat disease.
- Your cat scratches its ear frequently and runs its paw over its head and ears
- Your cat regularly shakes or tilts its head to one side
- An unpleasant odor emanates from your little feline's ears
- Your cat is subject to a change in behavior ( irritability, abnormally calm, ...)
- Your cat is prone to loss of balance, disorientation or even a reduction in his hearing abilities
- The pinna of the ear or the auditory canal of your cat is red or inflammations
- Unusual discharge from your cat's ear: black or yellowish discharge
- Presence of unusual elements in the kitty ear: dark brown earwax, debris similar to ground coffee, blood, etc.kitty?
What are the consequences of infections of theear in the cat?
When not treated quickly, your cat's ear infections can have serious consequences that not all vaccines are available. These include otitis externa, otodectes, a hematoma of the pinna, and in the worst case, deafness.
Usually caused by bacteria or yeast, otitis externa is an infection of the cat's external ear canal. This bacterial or fungal infection is often linked to the presence of elements or foreign bodies in the ear canal of the small feline, such as, for example, a pile of hair or debris.
In any case, you should see a veterinarian as soon as possible, who will prescribe antibiotics to fight the bacterial infection and antifungals to kill the yeasts.
Otodects or ear mites
Extremely contagious, otodects are parasites that are easily transmitted from one animal to another. They are manifested by excessive itching and a secretion of black, grainy debris (that looks like ground coffee) from your little feline's ears.
The pinna hematoma The pinna
hematoma is linked to an accumulation of blood in the pinna of the kitty ear. This often happens when your cat, victim of an infection or an itchy condition, finds herself having to vigorously scratch her ears to relieve herself. The shock causes damage to the blood vessels around the ear, resulting in blood.
An infection in your cat's ears that is improperly or untreated can lead to complications over time, leading to deafness, which is irreversible. This is why you must regularly maintain kitty ears and imperatively consult a veterinarian as soon as the first signs of an infection appear.
Some additional tips
In order for your cat's ear infection to be completely eradicated, when cleaning or treating your cat's ears, always follow the dosage prescribed by the veterinarian, as well as the duration of treatment. When administering the ear product, do not hesitate to have someone help you to immobilize your cat. And finally, don't forget to reward kitty with a good treat and hugs after cleaning her ears.