How to Clean Cats’ Ears

If your online search has brought you to this page, then it means you are a caring and concerned cat owner. Your cat will thank you for this little extra bit of love and attention, and your vet fees will be considerably lower because of your self-resolve. Without further ado, let’s find out the best way to clean a cat’s ears.

Sleeping cat

Cats Are Fairly Self-Sufficient Groomers…Except When it Comes to Ears

Yes, the bad news is that your furry friend really needs a helping hand when it comes to maintaining good ear hygiene. If a cat doesn’t have access to a regular and safe ear cleaning routine, it can cause your pet to suffer from infections and pain. If you decide to leave the cleaning to the vet, then a check-up every six months should be adequate, but you should keep an eye out for any build-up in the ear cavities in between visits.

Why Do I Have to Clean My Cat’s Ears?

A cat’s ears have a self-cleaning mechanism that sloughs the wax and any impurities outward into the ear canal. The ear canal is where the problems can happen because this is where wax, trapped dirt or even worse, mites, can collect. You will be able to see when your cat has a mite infestation in its ear because there will be signs of blood-encrusted, blister-like lesions in the ear.

If you can see your cat has a mite infestation, you will need to have a topical medication applied at the vet before you can continue treatment at home. When the infection is under control, you can begin a regular ear inspection routine. After an infection, you should check your cat’s ears for discharge or ripe smells once or twice a month. You should also be aware of any swelling, redness, or inflammation.

How to Clean Your Cat’s Ears

Once your cat has been given the all-clear by the vet, you can continue to clean its ears at home using this easy method.

  • Have your cleaning solution and cotton gauze on hand. Some vets recommend a diluted solution of one part white vinegar with four parts distilled water. You could also use a saline solution or whatever your vet has given you.
  • Get kitty comfortable and gently pull back the ear flap.
  • Fill the ear canal with the solution.
  • Massage the ear at the base slowly for around ten seconds.
  • Release your cat and allow it to shake the solution out.
  • Wrap cotton gauze around your finger and pat the ear canal dry.
  • Repeat in the other ear.

You may need someone to help you hold your cat during this process. You can also try wrapping its limbs and torso inside a soft blanket but if this becomes a regular routine, your cat may grow used to it. Never use an ear swab for humans, and remember to close your own mouth and eyes before your cat shakes the solution out of its ears!



4+ cats and 2 dogs over the past decade, loves to write, not a huge fan of coffee... but LOVES her pets! Read More
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