The symptoms are a thick black secretion, severe itching of the ear, head shaking and a severe ear inflammation
Doctor Hila Bareket, SPCA Israel veterinarian
Ear mites are tiny parasites on the order of 0.4 mm. in size, whose scientific name is Otodectes Cynotis, and they can be seen only with the aide of a microscope. The mites live and lay eggs that develop within the ears of cats and therefore cause severe itching and severe ear inflammations. Infection is by means of direct contact between cats and dogs, and in general it is a very infectious parasite.
The symptoms are a thick black secretion, severe itching of the ear, head shaking and a severe ear inflammation. In very bad cases, which are not treated, in the wake of the scratching and the head shaking, hemorrhaging is likely to develop which will cause the development of edema and thickening of the auricle. Mites are also likely to enter the inner ear and from there to penetrate the brain – but that is a very rare situation. The diagnosis is simple, by means of a microscopic examination of a sampling of the black secretion.
The treatment of the mites includes:
– Cleaning of the outer ear and the auricle.
– Daily treatment with ear drops that include Ivermectin for a long period of time
– In severe cases, together with the above treatment there are weekly inoculations for 4 to 6 weeks.
We have to remember that the treatment is long-term and that the illness is very infectious among cats and dogs. A cat who is once infected and treated, is likely to be re-infected again the moment that it comes into contact with an infected untreated cat.