Ear mites are tiny little insects that can barely be seen with the naked eye. But for something so small, they can cause a lot of grief. Here’s what you should know about ear mites in cats
Facts About Feline Ear Mites
You probably didn’t know that the Latin name for ear mites is “Otodectes cyanotis.” Literally, this means “picker of the ear.” Anyone who’s ever had a pet afflicted with these little “pickers” can understand, since they cause severe itching. The constant itching leads to lots of scratching, which irritates the ear canal. Plus, bacteria can infect the raw, irritated areas, leading to a cat ear infection.
The constant scratching can also cause a hematoma to develop. This blood-filled pocket on the ear flap is very painful for the kitty, and must be drained by the vet to prevent permanent scarring.
Kittens are very susceptible to cat ear mites. Where do they get them from? Usually from mama cat. As cats mature, they develop some immunity to ear mites, and even though a cat is infected, she may not show any symptoms. Up to 50% of all adult cats are infected with ear mites, and they quickly share them with other pets in the household. This is why you need to treat all your pets at once, even if only one is showing symptoms of pet ear mites.
Symptoms of Ear Mites In Cats
A kitty who is constantly scratching her ears and shaking her head probably has ear mites. If you look in her ears, you’ll see a thick, reddish-brown to blackish ear wax that may resemble coffee grounds.
Want an easy way to check for feline ear mites? Rub her ear canal area. If she starts making scratching motions with her back legs, the little bugs have probably set up housekeeping in her ears.
Your vet will take a sample of the wax from the cat’s ear in order to make a diagnosis. Ear mites can often be seen with the naked eye, as tiny white dots scurrying around. The mites can be seen more easily under a microscope.
How To Treat Cat Ear Mites
Ear mite treatment for cats used to be an unpleasant round of cleaning the kitty’s ears every day, and applying insecticidal ear drops. After a week or ten days of this, both kitty and owner were ready for a divorce. And the sad fact was that a second round of treatment was usually needed, as new ear mites hatched out.
The days of cat owners torturing their kitties, while Kitty got her revenge by shaking her head and showering her owner with greasy ear drops and ear crud, are thankfully over.
Today, there are products like Aacarex, and Revolution for cats, which require only one application to clear up a feline ear mite problem. But keep in mind that you’ll still need to have the vet clean out Kitty’s ears. Otherwise, the thick earwax caused by the mites can prevent the product from reaching the ear mites and killing them.
Don’t let ear mites in cats continue to make life miserable for your kitty. Click on any link in this article to learn about a natural remedy that can help end this problem.