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Is it Ear Mites?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
One of my three cats, Sandy, has recently started scratching his ears ALOT. In the last two days he has removed fur, and has tiny red sores on the outside. He has tiny, but visible, brown-ish spots on the outside as well, but the inside looks fairly clean. Does this sound familiar to anyone? Could it be ear mites? He is an outdoor only cat (he and his siblings were born feral, and will turn 2 yrs any day now. They must be outdoor due to human with asthma). This is a new experience for me - what does anyone reccommend? Sandy REALLY does not like the whole vet experience. Is there a treatment I can administer at home to save him the trauma?
Thanks for the help!!
post #2 of 7
It could be ear mites, but possibly just dirty ears. Ear mite infested ears usually have a lot of slightly chunky/grainy textured dark brown goop. If it is ear mites and is a mild case, you can apply a topical flea preventative that protects against ear mites, such as Revolution. If after a week or so he's still going to town he'll probably need something stronger, like ivermectin, which is going to require a vet visit. Also they'll be able to diagnose ear mites for certain or any other nasty ear infection that would cause him to scratch. Either way, Revolution or the like will do no harm if it isn't ear mites (what's the harm in a little flea prevention, right?) and maybe that's all that will need to be done!
post #3 of 7
It could also be another kind of infection, such as yeast... If he is feral, and you think a vet visit would be very traumatizing, I would give him some Revolution first, and if that doesn't resolve, take him to the vet. You can ask your vet about Tresaderm too - it will take care of fungal and bacterial infections, but you do need to be able to get him and apply it 2x/day for about 7 days... I don't think it should be a problem for you to get a prescription from your vet - Trasaderm is very safe, and a great first aid ointment to have at home.
post #4 of 7
My kitty does this when her allergies flare up. Most of the time she's okay, but when it gets really bad I give her allergy medicine. She's also had a yeast infection in her ear before as well as a build up of ear wax and she's acted the same way. I know taking him to the vet is difficult, but that's really what you need to do to get a correct diagnosis and treatment.
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks to all for the very helpful info!!
This morning, my other male (Winky) starting scratching at his ears, too. Again, the insides look fairly clean, but the exteriors have a few tiny dark brown-ish specks on them. I was able to pick a few of these off each of their ears without much fuss. If not ear mites, could it be a sign of fleas / ticks ?? The only place they're scratching is the ear area. My female (Faylene) hasn't displayed the same problem ... yet!! She's a different story, as I can't pick her up for inspection / treatment (she has to be trapped for the vet).
Any other info / advice is greatly appreciated!!
post #6 of 7
Have you talked to the vet and tried the Revolution ? That might be a good place to start as this is not resolving on it's own.

The vet may be willing to work with you if they know the circumstances of not being able to get them in easily. If you can touch them maybe you could swab Sandy's ear with cotton and go directly to the vet for them to look for ear mites. Must go straight away as I think ear mites don't live long without a host.

There is a single dose treatment for ear mites now. Then for sure get them on a routine preventative for these things. Revolution from what I remember prevents ear mites, various worms, fleas, etc. Especially because you cannot get them to vet easily.

What does the vet say? Will they help?
post #7 of 7
It doesn't sound like ear mites - they would cause the inside of the ears to look dirty, not the outside. I'd suspect something else like ringworm.

I agree with others - call your vet and explain that you are taking care of feral cats and you can't get them into their office easily. You might have to try some different treatments to see what responds to it.
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