Why does my dog scratch his ears?

Dogs have a tendency to scratch their heads, especially in the area around their ears. This can be quite normal, as well as a sign to be taken seriously, especially if the scratching of the ears becomes more and more frequent.

Itchy parasites

One of the most common causes of ear scratching in dogs is the presence of parasites, very often fleas, which lodge on the head and ears. They find there warm places where they like to settle down to consume their meal, which is none other than the blood of the dog. A preventive antiparasitic treatment should prevent this type of scratching.

A dirty ear canal

Dog ears, like human ears, accumulate dirt that can cause itching when it becomes too abundant. It can also cause a dirty coat at the exit of the ear canal and smell bad. It is advisable to clean the inside of the ear from time to time, with delicacy. Indeed, this cleaning must not weaken the ear by cooling it too much. Therefore, avoid cleaning the ear canal with too much water or product and exposing the dog to cold. Especially in breeds of dogs prone to ear infections. Remember to dry the ear thoroughly after cleaning, either with a damp cloth or a commercial cleaning spray, and leave your dog in a warm place until everything is dry.

Allergies with skin reactions

A new collar or basket made of material that causes an allergy can explain a dog that scratches a lot. If you have just changed these accessories, or changed the couch, carpet, etc., try putting them out of the dog’s reach for a few days to see if it improves. Itching is also caused by food allergies: if you have introduced a new food, it may be the cause of the problem. An allergic reaction to an insect or parasite bite can also explain why your dog is scratching his ears in an unusual way. Bees, wasps, fleas and many other small animals can sting and cause a local allergy. The skin becomes red with a possible discharge. Scratching lesions obviously makes the situation worse. To relieve the dog, rinse the area with clear water, put a cold wet washcloth or a bag of ice cubes which will relieve the itching. Consultation of a veterinarian is necessary if the symptoms persist.

A wound

Your dog may have injured himself while out walking or even playing. Sometimes wounds are hard to see without paying special attention because they are hidden by hair, especially in long-haired or thick-haired dogs. But a dog that scratches more than usual may have a lesion. Cleaning the animal with a white cloth or compress can help find bleeding or discharge that could signal an infection. In this case, clean the wound with a sterile compress ideally, an antiseptic, after rinsing well with water. If the wound appears to be significant (other than a scratch) and does not improve the next day, consult a veterinarian who will prescribe treatment or stitch the wound if necessary.