Ear Mites In Cats Symptoms Causes Pictures Home Remedies Treatment & Prevention
What are the signs and symptoms of ear mites in cats? Learn how to tell whether your cat has ear mites. Find out the causes of these mites and how to get rid of them. Read on to discover the best treatments and home remedies for ear mites on cats. We have included illustrative pictures for better understanding.
What Happens If Cat Ear Mites Are Left Untreated
If left untreated, ear mites can have serious consequences.
For example, the constant head shaking can lead to rupture of the ears blood vessels and result in an aural hematoma . Aural hematomas require surgical correction.
Another possible consequence is a severe ear infection. At first, the infection will be limited to the outer ear . However, over time, it can spread and affect the middle and inner ear .
If the infection spreads to the eardrum, it can damage hearing. This can also affect the cats sense of balance.
Ear Mite Treatment Quantity
You should look at the size of the bottle or tube. How many treatments will you get out of your purchase, particularly if you own more than one cat? Youll want to avoid buying multiple medications at different times when you need to keep the treatment consistent. Waiting weeks for the medication to arrive in the mail could take the healing process back a few steps.
Read Also: Blue Nose Pit Bull Puppies
S For Successful Treatment Of Ear Mites:
Petpost Cat Ear Cleaner
Petpost Cat Ear Cleaner is an ear cleaner meant for cats that will clear up any debris and wax. Its somewhat more expensive than many of the other products on this list, but it does have a 100% money-back guarantee if you are not happy with the results. Petpost is made up of plant-based products such as coconut oil and aloe, which will make it less harsh than some of the other products.
However, this product is an ear cleaner and not specifically meant for just treating ear mites and might be best used alongside ear mite treatment. It has a strong fragrance that has been added that may be off-putting for pets and humans alike. It also proved to be not always effective at eradicating ear mites.
- Ear cleaner rather than ear mite treatment
Read Also: Why Does My Nose Get Stuffy When I Eat
Mite Infestation Of Cats
, DVM, PhD, DACVM, Department of Diagnostic Medicine/Pathobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine, Kansas State University
Mange is caused by microscopic mites that invade the skin of otherwise healthy animals. The mites cause irritation of the skin, resulting in itching, hair loss, and inflammation. All forms of mange are highly contagious. Cats are very susceptible to several types of mange, including canine scabies, feline scabies , ear mites , walking dandruff , and trombiculosis. Demodicosis is not considered mange, but it is also caused by mites.
How Are Ear Mites Diagnosed
Although it might seem simple enough to diagnose your cats ear mites by yourself , just like with fleas and ticks for cats, this should be avoided whenever possible. Certain forms of bacterial infections can easily be mistaken for ear mites by the untrained eye, and the treatments for these different maladies arent necessarily the same.
When diagnosing your cat, a veterinarian can help determine if the symptoms are actually ear mites or are caused by a bacterial infection, or even some sort of hereditary ear disorder. You will need to let your veterinarian know of your cats medical history, as well as if the cat has had any exposure to infected or unfamiliar pets.
A veterinarian can generally diagnose suspected ear mites by using an otoscope, a flashlight-like instrument used to explore the depths of the ear. In addition, the veterinarian can swab your cats ear and examine the sample under a microscope. They can then determine if the problem is ear mites, a bacterial infection, or something else entirely.
You May Like: What Does It Mean When Your Throat Itches
Shedding And Hair Loss
If you live with cats, you learn to cope with cat hair on your favorite sweater. But if you notice your cat is losing more hair than usual or has bald patches, see your veterinarian as soon as possible. Abnormal hair loss can be a warning sign of several illnesses, as well as fleas, stress, allergies, or poor nutrition.
Check Your Other Animals
- If you have more than one pet and you, therefore, suspect that one of them has ear mites, then you should ensure that you check all of their ears.
- This is due to the fact that ear mites spread easily between the animals if they sleep together or even groom each other.
- If you only treat the affected animal, then it can be that other pets are harboring the parasite but dont indicate any signs, and might thus act as a reservoir for a re-infection.
- If one pet is having ear mites, then it is likely that you are required to treat all the pets in the house so as to do away with an infection.
Recommended Reading: What Does Strep Throat Look Like
What Is Cat Ear Wax
Most cats do not naturally develop large amounts of wax in their ears, although it can happen. Often when you do see a dark and smelly wax buildup, it indicates another condition, such as a yeast or bacterial infection, ear mites, or other irritations like grass awns in the ear. If your cat’s ears look healthy with pale pink skin and some light brown wax, this is likely normal.
Preventing Cat Ear Problems
To help your catâs ears stay perky and pest-free, check inside their ears regularly for signs of wax buildup, inflammation, or odor. If you notice a problem, itâs time to talk to your veterinarian.
Catâs ears are expressive, beautiful — and very fragile. To avoid damaging the eardrum or packing wax deep into the ear, never insert anything into your catâs ears or use over-the-counter medication unless your vet has shown you the proper way to do so.
Itâs easy to interpret a catâs ear discharge as mites when itâs something else, or to leave a mild infection untreated until it becomes serious or chronic. Donât leave your catâs comfort to guesswork — always talk to your vet when you suspect ear problems.
You May Like: 8 Week Old Puppy Dry Nose
How To Get Rid Of Ear Mites In Cats
Ear mites are microscopic parasites which infect the ears of a cat. They also like to live in warm, dark environment of the ear canal, where they then feed on the skin debris. These particular mites then create irritation and itchiness, which leads to the cat scratching its ears.
This scratching may lead to problems like skin infections or even a swollen ear flap, which requires veterinary attention. Catching and treating of the ear mites in cats quickly might avoid later problems and ensure a healthy cat.
Worms Mites Ticks And Other Bugs That Live On Cats
Dr. Bartley Harrison is a veterinarian with more than 15 years of professional veterinary experience treating dogs, cats, rabbits, ferrets, birds, and small mammals, with a specific focus on Emergency Medicine. Dr. Harrison is part of The Spruce Pets veterinary review board.
The Spruce / Hugo Lin
Cats are susceptible to many different types of parasites, but there are two main classifications of them. Cats will either get internal or external parasites. Internal parasites are inside the body, while external parasites live on the outside of the body in the skin or ears of a cat, but no parasite is a good parasite. It’s important for cat owners to do what they can to prevent parasites from infecting their pets.
Recommended Reading: Are Q Tips Bad For Your Ears
How Long Does It Take To Get Rid Of Ear Mites In Cats
It will take at least three weeks after treatment begins for the mites to be completely gone. Over the course of this time period, your cats itchiness should begin to subside as the medication takes effect. If your cats symptoms dont improve, you should contact your veterinarian as soon as possible.
Since These Symptoms Are Similar Can I Just Buy Some Ear Drops
“Without knowing the kind of infection present, your veterinarian does not know which drug to use.”
No, careful diagnosis of the exact cause of the problem is necessary to enable selection of appropriate treatment. Several kinds of bacteria and fungi may also cause an ear infection. Without knowing the kind of infection present, it is not possible toknow which drug to use. In some cases a foreign body, tumor, or polyp in the ear canal may cause the ear infection. Treatment with medication alone will not resolve these problems. It is important that the cat be examined to be sure that the eardrum is intact. Administration of certain medications can result in loss of hearing if the eardrum is ruptured.
Don’t Miss: What Causes Nose To Run
Ear Mite Treatment For Cats
Its important to bring your cat to the veterinarian if she exhibits any ear problems. Left untreated, an ear mite infestation can cause serious damage to the cats ear canal, especially if the cat develops a secondary bacterial infection.
Untreated ear infections are not only very painful, but they can cause hearing loss and balance problems due to loss of equilibrium. Your vet will do a full physical exam and look into your cats ears with an instrument called an otoscope.
The veterinarian will also collect a sample of the ear debris with a swab to be looked at under a microscope to determine the root cause of the problem and what treatment is needed.
Read More: 5 Best Ear Mite Treatments for Cats
How Can Ear Mites Be Prevented In Cats
As with most pet parasites, hygiene and regular checkups are always key to prevention. Keep your cats toys and bedding clean, and check their ears on a regular basis . As mentioned previously, have any newly-adopted pets checked by your vet to help prevent ear mites from spreading to the pets already in your home.
Your cats ears dont need to be a haunting ground for mites stay vigilant, and keep the creepy crawlies out of your felines furry ears this Halloween !
Read Also: Woke Up With Burning Throat
Watch For Scratching Or Shaking
- Ear mites lead to irritation, and so the cat scratches repeatedly at an ear using a back paw or frequently shaking off its head.
- The cats claws can break the skin surface, causing additional soreness and thus bacterial infections.
- A cat which suffers from ear mites for a long period of time develops inflammatory polyps in ear canals, and blood blisters on ear flaps because of constant rubbing and scratching.
- In addition, the external ear can be inflamed and thus produce pus, or the cats eardrum can be torn, leading to balance issues and other problems which need professional veterinary assistance.
Overview Of Cat Ear Mites
Ear mites are tiny bugs that live in an animals ear canal, including cats. They are widespread in sick cats, kittens, and those with compromised immune systems. However, ear mites dont always occur because of an underlying problem.
Sometimes, the only problem is the ear mites. Ear mites can jump from dogs to cats. However, they are not very common in people.
Also Check: How Does Your Nose Get Stuffy
Treating The Cat With Ear Drops
Symptoms Of Ear Mites In Cats
Cats with ear mites commonly display these symptoms, usually due to uncomfortable itching:
Scratching the ears, head, and neck
Dry, crumbly, black or red-brown discharge in the ear canal
If ear mites spread to other areas of your cats body, you may see:
Skin crusting and scaling on the neck, rump, and tail
Generalized itching and scratching
You May Like: Ear Ringing And Light Headed
Summary Of Ear Mites In Cats
Ear mites in cats are common, but can cause severe irritation and are highly contagious. Thankfully, they are easily treatable. If you notice any symptoms of ear irritation such as head shaking, scratching or inflammation, you should get your cat examined and treated promptly, to avoid secondary infections or torn eardrums.
Four Paws Ear Mite Remedy
Four Paws Ear Mite Treatment is designed to treat cats suffering from ear mites. It is well priced and contains aloe to help soothe itchy and irritated ears and be purchased for dogs or cats. It will eradicate ear mites on contact and can be used in conjunction with ear cleaning.
One of the most significant problems with this product, however, is the bottle design. We found that the product did not drip out easily, and when youre holding a fidgety animal, it proved difficult to administer the drops into the cats ears. In some cases, the top of the bottle came off easily while squeezing, which could mean too much of the product will pour into your cats ear. This formula is also based on Pyrethrins, please follow the precautions mentioned above and the manufacturers instructions carefully. Some have also found that the ingredients are too potent for use on the sensitive skin of cat ears.
- Difficult to squeeze drops out of bottle
- Bottle top sometimes comes off while squeezing
Recommended Reading: Nebulizer Breathe Through Mouth Or Nose
How Are Ear Infections Treated
The results of the otoscopic examination and cytology tell the veterinarian how to properly treat your cat. If there is a foreign body lodged in the ear canal, the cat can be sedated so that it can be removed. Specific medication can be prescribed for bacteria or fungi sometimes more than one type of infection is identified and this situation requires the use of multiple medications.
An important part of the evaluation is the identification of underlying disease. If this cannot be done, the cat is less likely to have a positive response to treatment the cat may respond temporarily, but relapse when the medication is discontinued.
How To Tell The Difference Between Ear Mites And Ear Wax In Cats
A small amount of ear wax itself is normal in a cat, but if you see any of the above symptoms, such as head shaking and scratching, your cat may have ear mites.
- Wax in both normal cats and cats infected with mites is brown.
- The normal type of wax is a lighter brown color and does not give off an odor.
- The wax in a cat with ear mites is darker brown or black and is described as looking like coffee grounds. It also will smell bad.
- The reason the mite wax is darker is that it’s mixed in with dried blood and skin from the damage the mites are doing to your cat’s ears.
- If you see wax and the ears are also inflamed, this likely means mites. Wax in a pink or pale pink ear is probably not indicative of mites.
You May Like: Hotels Near Nos Center San Bernardino