Shepherd dogs have erect years, some do suffer from ear
infections but most don't. I have a case where the dog
keeps rubbing his infected years for several years. The
condition becomes chronic otitis externa. The owner
pours in ear drops, ear oil, ear powder and anything as
can be purchased from the pet shop. But the condition
does not improve because the owner had not got rid of
the dirt, hairs and dead cells inside the horizontal ear
canal. Vets have had been consulted but the problem
persists. So the owner tried another vet.
What to do in such cases?
Ear irrigation under sedation by your vet and
medication. Follow up in one month's time but few
Singapore owners bother to do so.
Usually such dogs are old but they need not suffer if
the owner gets a vet who treats the dog with ear
irrigation and follow up rather than some injections,
medications and ear drops. The following is an example
of a case I treated.
GERMAN SHEPHERD, MALE, 11 YEARS, 37.2 kg
Right ear full of smell and blood. Scratching all the
The owner was in a hurry. "No quick solution," I said.
"The ear canal needs to be irrigated thoroughly and that
means the dog has to be sedated. There are anaesthetic
The owner was aware of the risk. I gave the following.
CALCULATED DOSAGE/10 KG HEALTHY YOUNG DOG IS:
Domitor 0.4 ml + Ketamine 0.5 ml IV = 0.9 ml IV
For 37 kg, the dosage should be 3.7X but not for old
FOR THIS DOG, 37.2 KG, OLD
Domitor 0.8 ml + Ketamine 1.4 ml IV = 2.2 ml IV
Atropine 1.5 ml IM
Both ears were irrigated more than 30 times with 20-ml
syringe with the dog in dorsal recumbency (on his
After that I gave Antisedan 1.0 ml IV to reverse the
effects of Domitor. The dog took 10 minutes to wake up
but was very weak. We carried him to the owner's car.
Medication, ear ointment. I doubt I will see him again.
A follow up one month later will be necessary but almost
100% of the owners don't bother.
My brother has an old German Shepherd with the same problem.
Usually he consulted other vets for some reasons I did
not ask. However, he would order Hills' anti-allergy dry
dog food for this dog through my practice.
One day, I told him that his dog's chronic ear
infections would be likely due to an infection and not
just due to "dog food allergy". He brought his dog in
for treatment of ear irrigation under sedation to flush
out all debri and dead cells, some 5 months ago. I must
ask what happened now as I did not see him recently and
forgot to follow up. No news is good news?
Case 2. FOX TERRIER, MALE, 12 YEARS
The complaint is that the skin disease does not cure
despite spending lots of money seeing the vets. The
sides of the chest become bald. This was generalised
ringworm. I advised clipping and gave medication for 20
days. I asked for review 4 weeks later. The owner did
not turn up. The dog also had difficulty peeing and I
detected an enlarged prostate and advised neuter if it
is enlarged. The ear flaps were black due to continued
scratching over the years of suffering.
2 months later, he turned up to say that the dog still
has scales but the hairs had grown back on both sides of
the chest. Ringworm was detected. The dog's ears were
full of liquid sounds. The wife poured pet shop ear
drops almost daily. No ear pain. Much improved ear flap
in that the black colour was gone by 80%.
Reviews are necessary in skin diseases. Otherwise, the
owner keeps vet hopping and spends a lot of money. Who
to blame? But the vet! It is best to communicate
repeatedly to the owner that not all skin diseases may
not be cured with one visit. However, a vet who fails to
perform (by producing a cure in one treatment) will lose
the client and this has happened to me too. No second
chances from some owners in private practice. Cure or no
P.S. In xylazine + ketamine IV sedation, the guideline
is less ketamine proportion for dogs. More
ketamine proportion for cats. Does it apply to domitor +
ketamine sedation? I need to do some research on this.
In cats, I give xylazine 0.1 ml + ketamine 0.4 ml IM for
less than 5 kg spay. I have not used the combination in