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Ear problems are one of the top routine reasons why dogs visit the veterinarian, and many dogs suffer with painful and unpleasant ear conditions for years on end before a true long-standing cure is found. A holistic approach to the problem considers the environment in which the dog lives, what he eats and his lifestyle.

Often, the best approach is a two-pronged attack of holistic treatment and conventional medicines in order to get the situation under control, with just occasional natural remedies being necessary for general maintenance of the ears, thereafter.

Ear problems often go hand in hand with environmental or food-based allergies and sensitivities, and dogs who are prone to itchy skin and hot spots frequently suffer with ear issues as well. As with many skin conditions, a problem with the ears may be indicative of some other internal issues going on with another body system.

Certain types of bacteria and yeast are present naturally, throughout the body including the ears. They are part of the balance of life, but when environmental or other factors disrupt the balance, either one can grow out of control and an ‘infection’ results.

A conventional veterinary approach to ear problems often involves the prescribing of antibiotics as well as steroids and other medications, which can provide some immediate relief by suppressing the symptoms, but which tends to be only a temporary fix and doesn’t actually offer a true, long-term cure. Sometimes, a brief prescription of prednisone or other steroids can be helpful in breaking the ‘vicious cycle’ of a really persistent and very uncomfortable ear problem, especially when the dog risks doing serious long-term damage to himself by repeated scratching and head-shaking. The short course of Prednisone can then be followed by a holistic approach that looks at the animal’s diet, lifestyle and total system and then makes use of natural herbal and homeopathic remedies, in order to accomplish a true long-term cure.

Read more about symptoms, causes and remedies for ear problems >

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