Friday, September 10, 2010

Day 88: Managing Monkey Ears

So far, the only one in our home who has not been affected by our recent positive, healthy changes is Mason. Masonite. Monkey. The Monk. The Monk-meister. Monkasaurus Rex. Funky Monkey. Yella Dog. Big Yella. Old Man. Flop Ear.

(He is known by many names. Except "Frank." He never would answer to “Frank.”)

He has been laying low these past 88 days! His changes came way early when he was about 5 and we noticed that he was scratching his nose to pieces as the obvious reaction to an allergy. His food was changed at that point, and he has been happy and healthy ever since.

With one small exception...the ears. Mason has chronic ear infections. Like, every single time it rains! His ears account for most of our trips to the vet. To give you some veterinary insight here, dogs with large, floppy ears often do not get enough air circulation to keep the ear canal dry, especially in very humid or rainy weather and after baths. Dogs whose ears stand straight up do not suffer this problem. And not all floppy-eared dogs suffer, either. Mabel has yet to experience ear drama. But Mason…poor, poor Mason.

We have been through so many kinds of antibiotics that our vet used to send cultures of Mason’s ear dirt to the vet school in Baton Rouge to determine what antibiotic would work best. We have given Mason daily injections at home to clear up infections at times. Now that he is 10 years old, if you even say the word ears, he begins to hang his head and look for an escape. Same reaction if he sees me with a cotton ball in my hand.

The point of all this in light of my project here is that we are going to clean Mason’s ears much more regularly now rather than waiting for an infection to creep up on us. I don’t know that it will prevent an infection, but it can’t hurt. Lately when his ears are infected, one ear canal swells up so badly that I can’t get medicine down into it. So, despite whatever proactive measures we might have taken in the past, we are going to make determined efforts now to keep those ear canals healthy. Weekly cleanings are on the schedule.

Sorry, Monk.


  1. Poor baby! Maybe you could clothespin his ears up when it rains? I'm sure he'd love that. ;)

  2. Yeah, but Mabel would make fun of him, and then his feelings would be hurt. ;)