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208 Breeds, 422 Health Conditions  |  Find a Vet

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Ear Fissure

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Condition Overview

Ear Fissure Occurs in breeds with floppy ears. It results from intense scratching along with violent head shaking, which causes the ears to snap.

Symptoms

The ear tips are denuded (lacking a usual or natural covering) or hair and often become bloody. With continued trauma, the tips of the ears split and a crack in the skin, called a fissure, appears.

Causes

This condition results from intense scratching of the ears, along with violent head shaking, causing the ear to split (or fissure).

Diagnosis

Diagnosis is made by physical examination of the ear.

Treatment

The underlying irritation, often an external otitis, should be sought and treated to eliminate the head shaking. Treat the ear tips by applying an antibiotic-steroid ointment such as Panalog, once or twice daily. If the fissure does not heal, It may need to be surgically repaired. bandaging techniques that prevent ear movement may help to speed recovery.

Prevention

See Ear Otitis for possible preventions.

Support

Please contact your veterinarian if your pet's ear fissure will not heal or becomes infected.

Show Sources & Contributors +

Sources

Dog Owners Home Veterinary Handbook

Publisher: Wiley Publishing, 2007

Website: http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/

Authors: Debra M. Eldredge, Liisa D. Carlson, Delbert G. Carlson, James M. Giffen MD

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