My Dog’s Ear is Puffed Up What Should I Do?

By Tom •  Updated: 02/20/21 •  3 min read
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Have you noticed that a part of your dog’s ear seems to be puffed up? Has he been shaking or scratching his head often? If you’re wondering what could be causing this, then you’ve come to the right place.

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We’ve put together some information on what may be causing this and whether or not you should call the vet about this problem.

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What Causes a Dog’s Ear to Puff Up?

When an ear suddenly puffs up like a balloon, it could be due to an aural hematoma. This is a painful condition, which is caused by a broken blood vessel usually inside the dog’s ear flap. One hematoma is common; however, a dog can develop two at the same time. The condition is caused by an underlying health issue such as an ear infection or ear mites.

Aural hematomas can also be caused by injury to the ear, allergies, or even an anaphylactic reaction (severe, possibly life-threatening allergic reaction).

If your dog has a puffed-up ear, never try to treat this at home. There is something causing the problem, which must be treated by the vet.

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What is a Hematoma?

You might say this is something like a pocket of blood that has built up between tissues in the dog’s ear. It’s like a big blood blister. Hematomas by a broken blood vessel that bleeds into the space between the skin and ear cartilage.

As you can imagine, this can be a painful condition, especially if left untreated.

How is an Ear Hematoma Treated?

The most common method of treating an ear hematoma is with surgery. This process involves draining the blood and removing any clots. Then what was the blood pocket is stitched together. This helps to keep scar tissue from forming.

The vet may also choose to place a surgical drain into the skin to help promote drainage of any remaining liquid. In some cases, the vet may also bandage up the ears to help support them as they heal.

Once the hematoma has been taken care of, the vet will then determine the underlying cause of the condition. Then they will prescribe the right type of medication in case of an ear infection or another type of ear problem.

Most dogs will go on to heal up so well you’d never know they had an aural hematoma.

So, if your dog has a puffed-up ear, then be sure to call the vet right away. This can be painful for your fur baby, but getting it fixed and treated will make him feel so much better!

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Tom

Tom has always loved to write since he was little - he wanted to be either a writer or a veterinary doctor, but he ended up being a professional writer while most of his works are based on animals. He was born in San Francisco but later moved to Texas to continue his job as a writer. He graduated from the University of San Francisco where he studied biotechnology. He is happily married and a soon to be father!

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