Doctor checking dog's ear

Can you treat an ear infection without a vet?

Dog shocked

The short answer: No.

Is your dog shaking their head like a maraca? Does it seem like they’re constantly clawing their own ears? If your first instinct is to search online for a home remedy for a dog ear infection, think twice. Lots of different things could be causing your dogBFF’s distress — and treating your dog for the wrong thing not only won’t help, it could make their situation worse.


Ear infections need the vet

Ear infections have many different causes. We’re here for the love, health, and happiness of your pet, which means knowing first what’s causing the problem, and then prescribing the most effective treatment for your pet. 


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Home remedies for ear infections often just don’t work. They can irritate and damage your pet’s ears, and sometimes even make an infection worse.

No Plastic

Please don’t put this stuff in your pet’s ears

If you’ve search online, you may find home remedies for dog ear infections like vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, or rubbing alcohol. These are all bad ideas, because they can irritate the inside of the ear and invite more infection. 

  • Vinegar 
    Sure, the acid in vinegar might kill yeast, but vinegar is mostly water. And that water will leave your dog’s ear canal moist, creating the perfect environment for an ear infection. 
  • Hydrogen peroxide
    Hydrogen peroxide is also mostly water. Once the initial bubbling stops (and we’re pretty sure your pet will hate that anyway), what’s left in the ear is… water.
  • Rubbing alcohol
    Rubbing alcohol will cause nearly unbearable irritation in your dog’s ears, which will be awful to watch and make it even harder for you or your vet to get anywhere near your pet’s ears for treatment. 

Never put anything in your dog’s ear without veterinary instruction. Your veterinary team can help you find the ideal treatment to treat the infection and give your dog much-needed relief.

Doctor checking Dog's ear

Get to the bottom of all that ear scratching

Itchy, uncomfortable ears can be caused by everything from ear infections to allergies and ear mites. If your dog’s ears are bothering them, bring your BFF in to have their ears checked. 

More about ear scratching

Ear infection relief—ASAP

Some dogs can be total ear infection magnets. Here’s what you need to know and what your veterinary team can do to help your dog get back to happier, healthier eartime.

What to know about ear infections

Doctors with dog at hospital
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