Ear Hematomas in Dogs

Ear hematomas are painful for dogs.

An ear or aural hematoma in a dog occurs when blood gathers between the skin and cartilage of the ear flap. The result is an ear flap that appears to be ballooning or bulging.

What Causes Canine Aural Hematoma?

Ear hematomas in dogs are usually caused when a dog shakes his head violently, resulting in the ear flaps banging against his head or into nearby firm objects.

A dog that scratches at his ear flap or experiences some other trauma to it can also develop an aural hematoma.

Most often, an underlying ear problem causes itchiness, pain, or discomfort to the dog, which results in him shaking his head hard or scratching at his ear. The most common causes of ear discomfort and resulting hematomas are:

Treatment of Ear Hematomas in Dogs

If your dog's ear flap appears swollen, visit the veterinarian right away. Sometimes, small hematomas will heal on their own if the underlying condition is properly diagnosed and managed.

However, an ear hematoma that is left to heal on its own often results in scarred, crinkled tissue on the ear flap. Here are some other ways aural hematomas are sometimes treated in dogs:

An Elizabethan collar will probably be necessary to keep your dog from flapping his ears or scratching at them during whatever type of treatment is used.

Regardless of the treatment that is used on the actual ear hematoma, the underlying cause must be diagnosed and treated aggressively for the hematoma to heal and to decrease the odds of it returning.

Prevention of Ear Hematomas in Dogs

Preventing ear hematomas means getting your dog in to the veterinarian anytime you notice a potential problem with the ears. Here are some of the signs of an ear problem that might lead to a hematoma:

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