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icky ears- no mites- what is it?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
i have two cats who get icky black gunk in their ears and the vet said to clean them (he gave me a cleaning solution but its very hard to get into their ears- they shake their heads before it gets down to where it needs to go)

he said it could be allergies, esp food allergies, but i guess i am wondering how could that affect their ears this way?

does anyone else have this problem?
if so what do you do?

if its allergies, would an antihistamine work?

post #2 of 7

Follow your vet's guidance and please don't self-medicate your cats with over the counter products unless your vet says this is okay. Instead of squirting the liquid into their ears, go and purchase a cotton roll. Roll the cotton into a sort of point, Saturate the cotton with the liquid the insert it gently into the ear and slowly turn it around the ear, squeezing as you go. Release the cat, it will shake its head and paw and run but that is normal. The mites are like tiny crabs and when they know they are going to die, they start biting the poor kitty. Once the cat has calmed down, catch her again and using a clean cotton roll gently clean out all the dead mites and dried blood-
post #3 of 7
My tulip suffers from icky ears! No mites, nothing wrong just gunk! I have use the cotton roll tip (definately not cotton buds). If you have stuff from the vet thats got to be better than dry cotton wool like mine. Tulip has a periodic vet trips and they clean them out but it comes back and has done over the past 18 years. They always look for mites but there is nothing. Maybe just like people she suffers from excessive ear wax!
post #4 of 7
A lot of human meds can be very dangerous for cats, so please don't give them anything without the vet's approval. If the ear cleaning doesn't seem to help, the vet may be able to prescribe something for them - perhaps a change in diet?

Some cats just naturally produce too much ear wax - Sylvestra's had that problem for years. I took her to the vet for it many times, and they never found any infection. Her ears don't bother her - it's just that they're yucky looking inside. Regular ear cleaning actually seemed to increase the problem, though, so now I have a special solution from the vet to dissolve the excess wax, and just use that occasionally when her ears get too gunky.
post #5 of 7
OK, so the vet should have checked for this, but I'll still mention it - did he run a test for an ear infection? (It's a form of yeast.) Mer had it right after I got him, and I had to clean his ears out twice a day for a month. It's very common in dogs, but very rare in cats.

What I found that works good is placing a towel over the bathroom sink and faucet, and placing the cat in there. As long as the sink is sorta deep, it cuts off escape routes, and I can control my 18 pounder with just one elbow on his shoulder blades. Lay their head against the side of the sink, and then squeeze the liquid into the ear and squish it gently like they showed you (at least, I hope they showed you) at the vets office. Don't let go of the cat yet, but let his head up and let him shake. Take a gauze pad and wipe gently around the ear. Voila - clean ear and little fuss.

While it may sound wierd, they should get used to it in a few days. Merlin would grumble when he knew it was coming, but he'd stay still and let me clean his ears, and would simply jump to the floor and clean himself when it was over, instead of running and hiding like he did the first few times.
post #6 of 7
Just be careful how much pressure you exert on the shoulder blades of your cat. You can also just lean over them and block their body with yours.
post #7 of 7
I have a cat that has problems with black stuff that looks just like mites in her ears. I've taken her to the vet several times and was told she has a yeast infection. Her vet said this is common after a cat has ear mites. Something about the when the cat get mites it changes something in the ears and makes them more prone to get yeast infections even though the mites have been completly cured. Now I just make sure her ears are clean and have a prescription on file with the vet so when her ears look bad I can treat it. I've been taking Princess to the same vet for over 8 years so they know us really well and if there is ANY differences I still take her in.
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