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Common Ear Disorders in Cats: Causes, Symptoms & Treatments

When you have a cat in your home, you should take care of his health and should examine each and every part of his body, including a small part called ears. If you find that your cat’s ears have become dirty, it may be a serious situation like infection, and you should immediately take him to the vet. But even on your own, you can take care of your cat’s ears.

You can visit Gordon Vet Hospital website to know how to get medical helpfor your pets.

Unlike in dogs, there is no variation in the shape and structure of cats’ ear canals among their different breeds. The ears appear same from breed to breed. This also means that all breeds of cats are at equal risk when it comes to ear diseases.


Causes for ear problems in cats can be classified into primary and secondary factors. Primary factors cause inflammation in ears. Examples of these are ear mites, polyps in the ear canal and allergies. Secondary factors are those which continue symptoms even if the primary cause is treated. They include fungi and bacteria.


Ear inflammation or otitis in cats shows symptoms like shaking of head and scratching ears. If the middle ear is suffering, neurological signs can be seen like facial paralysis. This takes place because inflammation deep in the ear affects nerves in that area.

Common Ear Disorders in Cats

When you think about treating ear disorders in your cat, you should think on why the infection occurred in the first place. It’s normally due to an underlying problem. Common causes of otitis in your feline family member are:

Allergies: Allergies in cats include atopy which is an allergy to pollens and dust in the environment. There may be food allergies too. Both the allergies can result in inflammation of the ear canal and enable fungi and bacteria to thrive.

Ear Mites:These tiny creatures can cause severe irritation and itching. They spread quickly from cat to cat.

Aural Polyps: An inflammatory outgrowth in the middle ear of cats is called a polyp. It’s not yet known why they develop but they can grow big enough to fill the ear and extend either outward or inward in the pharynx.


Ear infections in cats can be treated with medicated ear drops. These drops normally contain an antibiotic, an anti-inflammatory and an antifungal drug so as to ease the irritation. Keep using them as prescribed for as long as your vet recommends.

While treating the ear infections, it’s imperative that you should not only deal with the secondary fungi and bacteria, but also treat the primary causative factors. If you don’t, there are chances of recurrence. Based on the type of infection, tablets may be prescribed by your vet instead of ear drops.

Treating Polyps

Polyps may have to be removed surgically if they cause inflammation and irritation constantly.

Treating Allergies

There are many ways to manage allergies. If your cat is allergic to food, you will have to try several foods to find exactly what he is allergic to, and then eliminate it from his food. If the cat is atopic and reacting to environmental pollens and dust, a course of desensitising injections can be of help to tolerate the allergens better. Another option is medications like corticosteroids or anti-histamines that will stop allergic reactions in the body.

Treating Ear Mites

Ear mites can be treating with certain medications that are to be applied on the back of the ear only once a month. Theykill fleas, and intestinal worms and heartworm too.

Never Self-Medicate

Though ear infections are not as common in cats as in dogs, they still can be a frequent cause of pain and discomfort. Examining your cat’s ears regularly is a good idea to become aware of any problem. However, you should never treat the problem by yourself but get it can be treated byan expert North Turramurra vet like Gordon Vet Hospital. This will ensure that your cat gets the most appropriate treatment.