Tea tree oil has long been praised for its antibacterial, antiseptic and fungicidal properties. Not only is it great for the skin in diluted doses, but it can help keep your dog's ears clean and mite-free. Some owners even use tea tree oil to get rid of and prevent flea infestations. Learning how to use tea tree oil to clean and treat your dog's ears can help prevent your pooch from developing harmful and irritating ear conditions.
Is Tea Tree Oil Safe for Your Dog?
As a concerned dog owner, you want to make sure anything you use on your dog (internally or externally) is safe. Tea tree oil is actually used by some veterinarians, and as long as it is used properly, it is completely safe for your dog. You should never allow your dog to ingest tea tree oil, and it should only be applied to the skin in diluted doses. Experts recommend a dilution of 1:250 (1 part tea tree oil to 250 parts water). This amount is both effective and safe for your dog.
Creating a Tea Tree Oil Ear Wash
Use a clean squirt or spray bottle to create your an ear wash for your dog. Add 1 part tea tree oil and 250 parts water or olive oil. Olive oil is beneficial because it sticks better to the inside of the dog's ear, which is helpful if you're treating mites or trying to repel fleas. Be sure to thoroughly mix the ingredients.
Cleaning Your Dog's Ears
Gently holding your dog, squirt or spray a generous amount of the solution into your dog's ear. Immediately cover the ear opening carefully and then massage the ear gently for about a minute. This will ensure that the tea tree oil solution stays in the ear and does its job. Wipe any excess away with a damp cloth. The olive oil mixture is better for treating of mites and repelling fleas, while plain water and tea tree oil is best if you're just cleaning as a routine grooming measure.
How Often to Clean Your Dog's Ear with the Tea Tree Oil
You should clean your dog's ears once a week to maintain healthy, clean ears. If you notice any foul odor or discharge from your dog's ears, you should consult a veterinarian immediately.