Homemade Dog Ear Cleaner – Effective Recipes to Preventing or Treating Infection

by craftmin | January 20, 2018

Dogs have naturally sensitive ears, which need to be kept clean to keep your pet happy and healthy. While being clean is not the strongest suit of most canines, hygiene still plays a very important role to their health. Often, if this is neglected, dogs develop ear conditions that hamper their quality of life. Luckily, there are plenty of homemade dog ear cleaner recipes out there that prevent any sign of infection.

Signs of Ear Infection for Dogs

Spotting whether or not a dog has ear infection is not difficult. With the right knowledge, anyone can temporarily play the vet and diagnose. Typically, you’d know that your dog is suffering if it shows any of the following:

  • Discharge coming from the ear
  • Foul smell
  • Redness in the visible area of the ear
  • Swelling and bumps
  • Crusty-looking skin
  • Hair falls from the ear
  • Dark-looking earwax

Unless you smell earwax really up close, this substance is neutral in scent at most. But if you see that it starts to drip, looking dark, and has an accompanying bad scent, that’s a red flag for infection.

Although the earwax is the hallmark of an ear infection, the quality of the dog’s skin on thhe ears tends to change for the worse, too. Any deviation from a dog’s normal skin tone is a telltale sign of infection.

Considerations When Cleaning your Dog’s Ears

While you may be happy to care for your pet now, know that having to clean your pet’s ears isn’t a simple feat. Dogs, despite their desperate need for hygiene, do not like the idea of their owners tinkering around their body. Expect your dogs to shove you away, bite at things, or even play as a response.

The trick, however, is to make the activity as fun possible to your pet while also facilitating discipline to get the work done. How easy or difficult this part of the task is will depend on your level of relationship to your pet. The more you know the soft spots of your pet, the easier the task of cleaning its ears will be for you.

Once you’ve been able to get to your pet’s ears, remember the following:

  • Do not clean your dog’s ears with any tool – use a sterile cotton ball. Like you, your pet’s ears are very delicate and are very susceptible to pain and infection.
  • Be very mindful when dealing with the fleshy parts of the inside ear. It is much more delicate than the outer parts, so it’s better stay away from this part altogether and just focus on the externals areas.
  • If your dog’s ear canal is full of hair, you will be required to trim it to facilitate cleaning.
  • When in doubt, always let the expert do the task for you.

Homemade Dog Ear Cleaner Recipes and Natural Remedies That Work

Why spend money on a premade product from a store when you could come up with your own? Like most DIY recipes, a homemade dog ear cleaner is very practical and effective. In addition, they’re relatively safe to use as you know that their ingredients are all-natural.

These homemade dog ear cleaner formulas guarantee non-allergenic solutions to their usual ear problems.

  1. Alcohol, Boric Acid, and Vinegar Solution

    Homemade Dog Ear Cleaner | Source:

Here’s what you need:

  • 2 ounces vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon boric acid
  • Some drops of alcohol

This solution is relatively simple – all you need to do is mix boric acid and vinegar in a single container. This is followed by the alcohol to complete the mixture.

You can make your mixture more sterile by adding some drops of povidone-iodine into the mix. However, omit this if your pet has white fur. Povidone-iodine will only make a mess out of its light color and also emit a strong scent.

This is the perfect cleaning solution to use after swimming at a nearby sea or river. Don’t forget to keep the ears dry by wiping them with a washcloth or cotton ball. Moist ears tend to become a breeding ground for microbes among pets.

  1. Water and Vinegar Combo

    Homemade Dog Ear Cleaner | Source:

Here’s what you need:

  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2/3 cup vinegar

Pet owners who fear that their pets may have sensitivity to alcohol should turn to this simple solution of water and vinegar. This solution will also be best for dogs with dry skin, as they should really stay away from alcohol to avoid agitating the condition.

Making the solution is as simple as mixing the two ingredients together. However, it is worth noting that the water used with the mixture must be lukewarm.

For more potency, use apple cider vinegar. The acetic acid found in apple cider vinegar is great for removing any lingering debris and dirt from the ears. But, in addition to those benefits, this sour solution is also capable of killing pathogenic bacteria and yeast. As such, it encompasses both cleaning and disinfecting properties which both prevent and treat infection.

  1. Olive, Almond, or Mineral Oil

    Homemade Dog Ear Cleaner | Source:

Here’s what you need:

  • A few drops of either olive, almond, or mineral oil

Technically, there is no mixture here – by themselves, any of these oils is sufficient to clean the dog’s ears. More specifically, these oils are capable of loosening earwax so painful blockages can be removed.

To apply, simply heat the oil up  to body temperature – no hotter or you may harm your dog. Add a few large drops to your dog’s ears then let your pet shake its head to let the oil spread naturally. Wait for a couple of minutes for the oil to take effect. Remove the wax from your dog’s ears using a cotton ball.

  1. Alcohol, Hydrogen Peroxide, and White Vinegar

Here’s what you need:

  • Alcohol
  • Hydrogen Peroxide
  • White Vinegar

If your pet is displaying signs of allergy to certain ingredients, it takes a hypoallergenic formula to remedy it. In this case, a mixture of alcohol, hydrogen peroxide and white vinegar should alleviate the irritation.

The caveat, however, is that this solution may not always treat the problem. If symptoms of irritation persist despite the use of this formula, let a veterinarian handle the case.

  1. Water and Aloe Vera Gel Mixture

    Homemade Dog Ear Cleaner | Source:

Here’s what you need:

  • Alove vera gel
  • Water

Aloe vera gel is known for its ability to relieve irritations and is also effective in removing earwax. To make the mixture, simply pour the aloe vera gel into warm water until it liquifies, then add a tablespoonful of the mixture to each ear.

Leave the solution within the dog’s ears for a while until the formula takes effect, then wipe off.

Some irritations can to be more serious than others, and you may need to consult your vet if irritation persists.

  1. Mullein, Olive Oil, and Garlic

Here’s what you need:

  • Mullein leaves/flowers
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic (optional)

Mullein is an herb that is known for its antibacterial properties. When applied to the ears, it kills off bacteria and prevents infection.

You would have to be a lucky person to find the herb in the wild for picking. If you can’t find it, there are websites from which you can buy this precious plant.

To make the remedy, simply place the mullein plant in a glass jar, then cover with olive oil. For a more powerful antibacterial mix, add 1 or 2 cloves of garlic per pint of olive oil to the mix. Allow the mixture to sit for 2 to 3 weeks.

For actual application, either directly apply the solution into the dog’s ear canal, or soak a cotton ball in the mixture and apply that onto the ear instead.

  1. Oregano Oil and Pure Aloe Vera Juice

Here’s what you need:

  • Oregano oil
  • Pure aloe vera juice

Alone, oregano oil is a very strong ingredient which might irritate your dog’s ears so never use it directly in its concentrated form. Here, the pure aloe vera juice plays a critical role in diluting the oregano oil.

To make the mixture, simply pour add one drop of oregano oil to every ½ ounce of pure aloe vera juice.

You can use the mixture directly by pouring a drop into the ear or use a cotton ball for the application.

  1. Calendula, Olive Oil, and Garlic

Here’s what you need:

  • Calendula
  • Olive oil
  • Garlic

Calendula is an herb known for its healing powers, and it is common knowledge it works best at the superficial layer of the skin. Nevertheless, this herb also works from within. In fact, this plant is also popular as an analgesic and has antifungal properties.

To make the solution, simply pool all the calendula flowers into a glass jar, then cover with olive oil. Add in a clove or two of freshly-chopped garlic and let the mixture sit for 3 to 4 days.

Application is either directly into the ear canal using a dropper or via a soaked cotton ball.

  1. Coconut Oil and Garlic

    Homemade Dog Ear Cleaner | Source: Pinterest

Here’s what you need:

  • Coconut oil
  • Garlic

There are lots of healthy benefits to be sourced from coconut oil, including its antibacterial and antifungal properties. It only makes good sense to tap on these benefits in the fight against ear infection.

This is the only mixture which requires cooking. Gently heat two tablespoonfuls of coconut oil in a saucepan along with two fresh cloves of garlic. The presence of garlic complements the coconut oil’s antibacterial power.

Simmer the mixture until everything turns to liquid, then leave to cool down for a bit. You would not want to burn your dog’s ear canal by using a still-hot solution.

In the presence of infection, apply the solution directly to the dog’s ears at least twice a day for a week. Once the infection is treated, apply the same solution to just once a week as a measure to reduce the likelihood of future infection.