If your dog is pawing at his ear, it could be a more complex issue than you believe Here’s a question from a reader about her dog’s ear dilemma.
Q: My cavalier has something called “glue ear.” Is this common in the strain?
A: That’s a difficult issue. Glue ear, more officially called “primary secretory otitis media,” is a familiar difficulty in cavalier King Charles spaniels. It’s not your typical ear disease: The dog’s middle ear becomes obstructed with a gooey plug of mucus. If it gets extremely complete, the tympanic membrane can start to bulge, causing pain. While it’s seen most often in cavaliers, it is often noticed in rare cases in boxers, dachshunds and Shih Tzus. In cavaliers, the illness could be hereditary, but as of yet, there’s no authoritative signs of a genetic element aside from its frequency in the breed.
We don’t understand what causes PSOM. It may be a issue associated with the eustachian tube, which links the middle ear along with the rear of the nose, which is how air enters the middle ear. Another theory is that it’s associated with the form of the tympanic cavity. Signs of the difficulty include malady, notably in the head or neck region; or neurological signals such as head tilt or rapid eye movement. Dogs with the state may scrape often at their ears, rub their heads, yawn excessively or cry out in pain.
In serious instances, PSOM may be observable via radiograph or even when the veterinarian takes a look with an otoscope. Other times, investigation may demand a CT or MRI scan. Treatment calls for removing the mucus plug and flushing the middle ear (a process called a myringotomy), followed by drugs with corticosteroids and antibiotics. Treatment may have to be duplicated more than once before it’s successful, but normally PSOM has a great prognosis.
Read more, including about vacation safety dangers, in this recent Pet Connection!
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