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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Ear infection:
I'm pretty sure that my sweet boy has an ear infection. I can't get him to the vet for at least a week: my husband is away for army training and has our car, and we just moved so I literally don't have anyone who can give me a ride (because I don't know anyone). I've already spoken to local taxi companies and they won't allow animals in their vehicles, so I really am stuck. He's a floppy-eared dog, and lately he's been scratching his right ear and shaking his head a lot. He also squeals when we rub his left ear, which is usually something he loves. I have spoken to our vet and explained the situation, and they've advised me to keep an eye on it until I can bring him in and clean it once a day with our routine ear cleaning solution. But I'd just like someone to see it, so pictures are below:

His good ear
His bad ear, 1
Bad ear, 2
Bad ear, 3
Bad ear, 4

The pictures make it look better than it is. It is very red and inflamed. There's some build-up of either wax or dried blood. I did try to wipe some away very gently and it wouldn't budge, so I think it's dried blood (but he didn't exactly co-operate with me, so it could be wax that's just stuck). He doesn't seem to be in any pain unless you rub or clean his ear and he still sleeps on it. He hasn't been swimming or anything, but two days ago I did give him a shower: I'm nearly 7 months pregnant, so it's almost impossible for me to give him a bath. I can, however, shower with him. His ears were down the whole time so it isn't as though water was pouring into them, but I know that could be a factor.
I'd really appreciate some input. The vet said it sounded like an ear infection as opposed to mites, but said that without seeing it they can't really tell. We also have a cat so I'd like to know if it is mites that he can pass on to her.

Drinking habits:
As I said, we've just moved. Since then, he's been really funny about drinking. Whenever I get out of the shower he jumps in the tub and licks the water from the sides, and licks at the tap and generally acts like he's dying of thirst. When I run the water for him to drink from he loses interest, but then laps at the tiny drips when I turn it off again. I point him towards his water bowls and he may take one little lap - but usually doesn't - and then goes right back to the tub. We have a water bowl outside and inside for him, and he doesn't seem interested in either. These aren't new water bowls, nothing has changed in that sense. I can't tell whether he's really thirsty and doesn't want to drink from his bowls for some reason, or if he just likes to lick the tub but isn't thirsty. I know some dogs prefer running water to water in a bowl, but he's never been one of those dogs and as I said, isn't interested in the running water itself. The water in his bowls is changed daily, sometimes twice daily. I have no idea what's going on here. Help!
 

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Call some of the rescues and ask if they have a volunteer who might be willing to give you a ride to the vet. Or call petsitters and ask them. I'm sure one of them would help.
 

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Call some of the rescues and ask if they have a volunteer who might be willing to give you a ride to the vet. Or call petsitters and ask them. I'm sure one of them would help. Try a raised bowl. If he is older, he could be getting neck arthritis, that makes bending over painful.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Call some of the rescues and ask if they have a volunteer who might be willing to give you a ride to the vet. Or call petsitters and ask them. I'm sure one of them would help. Try a raised bowl. If he is older, he could be getting neck arthritis, that makes bending over painful.
Thanks. I just tried both petsitters and local shelters and sadly, they can't help either. UGH! I would carry him to the vet if I could.

He's actually still only a year old. As it happens, one of his bowls is raised and one of them isn't, and it makes no difference.

I wondered whether it may be something to do with how long the water has been running: after all, the shower runs for about ten minutes and then he hops in for a drink, but we don't let the water run before we fill up his bowls. But no: running the water for a while before we fill up his bowls makes no difference, and he's actually started to climb into the tub as his way of telling me he's thirsty. When that happens I run the water for him to drink from, and he backs away from it, but as soon as I shut the water off he licks the drops off the tub.
 

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Thanks. I just tried both petsitters and local shelters and sadly, they can't help either. UGH! I would carry him to the vet if I could.

He's actually still only a year old. As it happens, one of his bowls is raised and one of them isn't, and it makes no difference.

I wondered whether it may be something to do with how long the water has been running: after all, the shower runs for about ten minutes and then he hops in for a drink, but we don't let the water run before we fill up his bowls. But no: running the water for a while before we fill up his bowls makes no difference, and he's actually started to climb into the tub as his way of telling me he's thirsty. When that happens I run the water for him to drink from, and he backs away from it, but as soon as I shut the water off he licks the drops off the tub.
What city and state are you in? Maybe there is a member here that can help.
Call your local unemployment office and ask if they have someone that could use a few bucks that would drive you. Post on CL and ask if someone would be willing to take you. Contact your vet, and ask if they can recommend someone that would drive you. Or would he do a house call if you paid a little extra. Contact your local military base, spouse support, and see if they have someone that would help. Contact your local churches and ask.
 

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Bad Ear picture #4
Im not a vet..
but those long hairs inside the ear canal can tickle..and the dog will keep shaking its head and pawing its ear untill its red and inflamed.
I had a dog with this problem and "believe it or not"..I used a nose hair trimmer to cut them and the problem was solved.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
An update.

Turned out it was a yeast-based ear infection. I couldn't get a ride in the end: I tried everything suggested but to no avail. It had to wait until my husband got home, but in the week that we were waiting for that to happen I kept cleaning it with the ear cleaning solution and it did get much better. I did still take him to the vet, and they said it was an infection and gave me some ear drops for him. Our insurance covered all the costs, so it was never a financial issue, just an issue of actually getting him there. It's now fully cleared up, thank goodness.

As for the weird drinking habits... We just bought a Zerowater water filter for our own use, so we thought we'd try giving him water from there. He's now drinking from his bowl more often, so I guess he just didn't like whatever was in the water. But he still makes a beeline for the tub whenever anyone gets out of it, and if he hears running water! Is it possible that maybe he's now just got it in his head "water from tub good; water from bowl bad", and he's taking a while to adjust?
 

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This info is a little late:
1. A yeast infection usually smells yeasty, and it itches. Plus you may notice that the ears feel thicker (inflammed).
2. A bacterial infection smells pungent and may hurt. Again the ears may feel thicker.
3. An ear mite infestation may not smell, but itches.

Dogs can have a balance of bacteria and yeast in their ears, but it's kept down by natural immunity. However, water can encourage growth. Also, if the dog has allergies, there is a tendency for more yeast infections. In addition, if once ear gets infected, about two weeks later, the other ear may get infected, so be prepared, just in case.

With the water, I imagine that taste is very different and that the 'flavors' in the bathroom are more interesting :)
 
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