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Dr. Peter
Dr. Peter, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 32509
Experience:  16 years of internal medicine, surgery, and preventive care.
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My Newfoundland who is just coming up to 2 yrs old has suffered

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My Newfoundland who is just coming up to 2 yrs old has suffered repaeated ear problems. He is always having steriods & earwash. After the last bout, approx 6wks ago, he went back for a check up & all was looking good. He had been having the earwash everyday with me cleaning the ear after putting the wash in, nothing discharging & no smell. The vet has said its a bacterial thing & he will probably have to have ear wash every few days continually. I have done this & now he is back to shaking his head & getting quite distressed again. I was wanting to know if you think it would be a good idea for me to ask for a referal. I just can't believe there is nothing that can be done to clear whatever infection it is that keeps coming back. He also had his ears cleaned out under GA about 6 mths ago. Thank you.
Hello, I am Dr. Peter a licensed Veterinarian. I would like to help. I need to ask you a few questions to be well informed and give you the best advice. There may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my replies as I type out a thorough reply for you.

1- Has your veterinarian done a culture & sensitivity of the ear discharge?
2- What are you feeding him?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Hi Peter

The vet took a swab & said it was a bacterial infedtion. There has never been a noticable discharge. He is fed on Science plan purchased from the veterinarian surgery.

Thank you


Can you describe what are the symptoms that you are seeing?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Since Friday evening he has started shaking his head a lot again. He is now very agitated when I put the ear wash in his ears & he is trying to scratch his ear again. He really dislikes me trying to wipe out the ear after I have put the wash in & massaged it in. He rubs his ear on the floor when he is stopped from scratching it. He is obviously in pain again & its not long since he had the earwash with steriods in & since that stopped I have continued with the normal ear wash prescribed. I just feel it it time he saw a specialist as I fail to see why they can't clear up a bacterial infection.

Sheila, usually chronic ear infections are caused either by an underlying bacteria (s) that may be resistant to the antibiotics that are being used. Or, an underlying food allergy. I agree with you, this does not have to be like this long term. This is what you can do:
1- Discuss with your veterinarian about doing a culture & sensitivity of the ear discharge. This test will isolate the bacteria (s) and give a report with a list of antibiotics that are sensitive against the underlying bacteria (s). Treatment is then selected based on this report. The ear is treated for 10-14 days twice a day and that usually resolves the problem.
2- Change diet. You can speak to your veterinarian about switching diet to a hypoallergenic diet like Hill's z/d, this diet is made with special protein that does not cause allergies. Or, a grain free diet. Do a trial for 6-8 weeks on one of these diets, during this period he should not eat anything else. Give veggies as treats.
3- If your vet is not will to do the above then consider seeing another veterinarian.

Hope the above helps, if you have additional questions I will be glad to answer them.

Dr. Peter
Dr. Peter and 2 other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Thank you very much. I will see the vet tomorrow hopefully & change his diet. His snacks are veggies anyway, he is addicted to broccoli. He sits at the fridge before bed every night waiting for his bedtime snack! The only way he accepts me doing his ear wash is when his broccoli is waiting for him!

Thanks again


If he loves broccoli then you are 1/2 way there.

Your Welcome.

Dr. Peter