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question about cleaning ears

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  • question about cleaning ears

    just a little background on this client,when we first opened she was a kinda steady customer,she would bring in her poodle mix,well she was coming in about twice a month,then the last time i saw her last augast she wanted her 2 italian greys to have baths too,i said no prob,well i go to get one out and the male was severly cage aggressive,but i did manage to get them out,told her what her dog had did,never saw her again,until last month,apparantly her kid and my bathers kid are friends,so she decided to come back with her poodle mix matted solid,she said make sure you do the ears on him,i was going to so and so and they never did his ears,i asked do you mean ear hair pulled she said yes,so i looked inside of his ears and said they look good to me,she snapped back yeah because i did them,so she drops off dog and leaves,i called the other shop the owner is my friend i asked her about this dog,and she said the last 2 time dog came in it had an ear infection and told owner they couldnt pull the ear hair,i said that waht i thoughtmso i groom him,his ears were dirty,she comes pick up dog,comes back 2 weeks later on a sat,just walks in with all 3 dogs and asks if we can bathe them.well asked my bather if she could,she said sure,i warned her about the igh,the male one that its cage aggressive,and she sadi ok but he knows me,sure enough the little pirranha bites her finger,and to top it all off i spent i kid you not 20 minutes cleaning the poodles ears out,it was that thick black stuff in there looked like mud,the ears werent red or anything,i used so many cotton balls,it was so time consuming so my question is(sorry it took so long to get to my point)do you charge extra for severly dirty ears,or what would you guys do
    thank you
    ps i hope i never see her or her dogs again

  • #2
    If the ears are that full of debris, even if they aren't red or painful, there's probably a reason. And because that debris is going to be packed down, where I can't reach it with my finger and a cotton ball, I don't do them. I suggest they be checked by a vet, and explain that I didn't do them because the vet needs to see them "as is". Besides that, if I clean the ears, I'm tampering with the evidence.

    Even if it's just normal ear crud, the ears need to be flushed, not just wiped out. And I don't flush ears, due to the fact that I don't have an otoscope, nor am I licensed to diagnose or treat any condition that might be lurking underneath all that crud. I also still have the vivid memory of the Cocker mix who breathed through her ear. If I would have flushed that ear, she could have drowned.


    • #3
      Originally posted by Helly View Post
      I also still have the vivid memory of the Cocker mix who breathed through her ear. If I would have flushed that ear, she could have drowned.
      I'm afraid to ask about this, Helly!!!


      • #4
        Helly " cocker breathing through it's ear" thats weird. You can also cause the dog to get a permanent head tilt I have heard, Helly would probably know more on that subject. I have also had dogs get their ear's cleaned out after being severly full of crud and they get a hematoma from shaking their head and scratching their ears. So if the dog has excessive ear wax I won't touch them either, many vets will offer sedation to pluck ear hair and flush out an excessively dirty ear because it is sooo painful for the dog. And one vet told me that many dogs have a hard plug of wax and dirt covering their ear drum, and unless you get the plug out the dog will have ear infections all the time. He said he has special tools that can break it up and get it out, but it is almost like plaque it is so hard.


        • #5
          I don't charge extra for dirty dirty yucky ears. But I do charge extra for ear flushing, as long as it looks like wax/crud build up. Like Helly, I don't mess with ears that need vet care.


          • #6
            Sorry you had such a hard time, raining.
            When I clean ears I won't go into the canal. Just the outer stuff. Anything past that I consider vet territory. I won't even flush my beagles ears. I will put ear cleaner on a cotton ball, and then let it sit in the ear. It will loose stuff, and then it will easily wipe out.
            Scratch a dog and you'll find a permanent job. ~Franklin P. Jones


            • #7
              I don't charge extra unless it takes two people to get the little bugger to behave for ear hair plucking. If it's a pirahna every time, I go back to the vet techs, get help, then charge the owner, but only if it's an excessive amount of time AND they don't bring the dog in regularly which is part of the problem. Ie: One client of mine didn't come in often, I told her MORE THAN ONCE about her dog's ears needing a vet to look at them, to which she informed me that "We've been going through this for 10 years, bla bla bla..." but she did NOTHING to fix it, so I charged her for it the next time then she decided not to have me pull the ear hair anymore. So far it's just a little yellow and goopy. Fine by me, I hate plucking ear hair, lol.

              Tammy in Utah
              Groomers Helper Affiliate


              • #8
                I am always confused on this ear issue......

                About 99% of the dogs I get in the shop have dirty, dirty ears. Some smell, etc. How do you know when a vet should take a look when they don't smell?

                Do you ever put ear cleaner in the ear?


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Chicken View Post
                  I'm afraid to ask about this, Helly!!!
                  I guess it was one for the text books, that's for sure. Elderly Cocker with nasal tumors. She'd struggled so hard to breath that she ruptured her ear drum, and was breathing through her ear via the eustachian tube. And like I said, if you flushed her ear, she could have drowned. And with an open ear drum, you would have been forcing contaminated liquid into the middle ear, possibly the inner ear, and could have caused a raging infection.

                  Sooo, I don't flush ears.


                  • #10
                    I was told by a veterinary dermatologist years ago that a normal dog ear needs just a minimal surface cleaning--a bit of cleaner on a cotton ball and wipe....

                    Ears with a large amount of debris, wax--atever you want to call it--are abnormal an should be left alone and sent to a veterinarian for evaluation. If we use cleaners in a nasty ear, it will alter the results of a diagnostic ear swab at the veterinary hospital. Deep cleaning/flushing of ears by a groomer is practicing medicine without a license and will do more harm than good. Just inform the owner of the abnormality and send them to the vet.