Fly Bites on Dog's Ears
Flies are very aggravating to animals and humans alike. Flies often bite the edge of a dog's ear, and once a little blood is present, every fly in the area will be attracted to the ear. The painful bites can aggravate your dog to the point of weight loss.
TreatmentOutside pets and livestock need assistance to manage these pests. Treatment involves cleaning the inside of the irritated ear, healing the raw ear and keeping the flies off.
- Use Vet Basics® General Ear Cleanser to remove the debris inside the ear caused by shaking and scratching at their ears.
- Clean the ear margin with hydrogen peroxide or ChlorConazole™ Wipes to get the crusting off. The ChlorConazole™ will kill or prevent bacterial and fungal (ringworm) infections from settling in the traumatized area.
- SWAT Clear Fly Repellent will keep the flies off the area until it is healed. Apply to the affected ear margin and behind the ear if there are abrasions from scratching. This is all that is needed if it's caught early. Repeat daily for five days, then weekly as needed to prevent re-occurrence.
- Micro-Tek Pet Spray can be used to provide instant relief for itchy and irritated skin. It will help stop biting, scratching, and itching, plus it accelerates healing by helping promote a healthy skin and coat and soothing the irritated areas. After cleaning the areas with ChlorConazole, liberally apply Micro-Tek to cover the area. It will seal and soothe the raw area and encourage hair growth.
- Spray your pet with Mycodex All-in-One Spray to repel flies. It is water-based (most sprays are alcohol-based), so it can be used on the head without irritating the ears or eyes. You will need to apply it daily until the ear is healed, then as needed to keep the flies off. Most topical repellents do have Pyrethrins in them, and this is a way to add repellent to a wider area of your dog's body.
PreventionAnimal areas should have fly bait or traps to capture adult flies before they can lay eggs. Even removing some flies from the breeding population will decrease the next generation. QuickBayt can be mixed with water and painted on a fly bait station. The granules can also be used directly in an open container to attract and kill flies. Fly Traps work by trapping flies in a container where they die. The traps can then be discarded and replaced if needed. Both methods have been used effectively in kennels and livestock facilities, even under decks to keep flies away from humans. You can also spray the area with premise sprays, which provides quick knockdown of flies and other insects in the broad area around where animals live.
Dogs can inflict damage on themselves by just trying to keep flies off their ears. These traumatized ears can be very painful, but with the right treatment and fly repellent, you can soothe the pain and heal the trauma.
If you need help, call us at 800.786.4751.
Don Bramlage, DVM, Former Director of Veterinary Services at Revival Animal Health
The materials, information and answers provided through this website are not intended to replace the medical advice or services of your personal veterinarian or other pet health care professional. Consult your own veterinarian for answers to specific medical questions, including diagnosis, treatment, therapy or medical attention.