How to Clean Your Shih-Poo’s Ears: A Step-by-Step Guide

Have you noticed your furry friend constantly scratching their ears or shaking their head? If so, it may be time to clean their ears. Cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears is an important part of their overall health and hygiene, but it can be a daunting task if you don’t know where to start. Fear not, as we’ve got you covered with a step-by-step guide on how to safely and effectively clean your Shih-Poo’s ears. Read on to learn why ear cleaning is necessary, when to do it, and how to do it properly to keep your furry friend happy and healthy.

Why Clean Your Shih-Poo’s Ears?

Why Clean Your Shih-Poo'S Ears?
Cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears is important for maintaining their overall health and well-being. Ear cleaning should be a regular part of your grooming routine for your furry friend. The ears of your Shih-Poo can become a breeding ground for bacteria, yeast, and mites if not cleaned properly, leading to painful infections and other ear problems.

Particularly, dogs with floppy ears or those with hair inside their ears are more prone to ear infections. As a Shih-Poo owner, you must be aware of the signs of ear infections, such as itching, shaking the head, unpleasant odor, and redness inside the ears.

To avoid such problems, it is important to clean your Shih-Poo’s ears regularly. Regular ear cleaning helps remove dirt, debris, and excess wax from their ears, preventing painful ear infections and other ear problems.

Regular ear cleaning can help you detect early signs of any underlying ear conditions your furry friend may be experiencing. This can help you nip a potential problem in the bud and seek timely treatment.

By making ear cleaning a regular part of your Shih-Poo’s grooming routine, you can ensure their ears remain healthy and free of painful infections. In case you notice any signs of ear problems, it is important to seek the necessary treatment from a veterinarian.

Regular Shih-Poo ear cleaning is crucial for maintaining their health and preventing painful ear infections. By staying on top of their ear hygiene, you can help your furry companion live a happy and comfortable life.

When to Clean Your Shih-Poo’s Ears

When To Clean Your Shih-Poo'S Ears
As a Shih-Poo owner, it can be perplexing to know when to clean your furry friend’s ears. Understanding the importance of ear cleaning for your Shih-Poo can help you prevent infections and other ear-related health issues. It’s crucial to know when and how often to clean their ears to maintain their hygiene and health. In the next section, we’ll discuss the recommended ear cleaning frequency for Shih-Poos.


Keeping your Shih-Poo’s ears clean is essential to their health and well-being. Cleaning your dog’s ears should be done on a regular basis, and the frequency depends on a few factors such as their age, activity level, and overall health. Typically, you should clean your Shih-Poo’s ears at least once a month, but more frequent cleaning may be necessary for some dogs.

If you notice a buildup of wax or debris in your dog’s ears, or if they are scratching or shaking their head frequently, it may be a sign that their ears need cleaning more often. However, it’s important not to over-clean your dog’s ears, as this can cause irritation or infection. If you’re unsure how often to clean your Shih-Poo’s ears, consult with your veterinarian for guidance.

In addition to regular ear cleanings, it’s important to keep an eye out for any changes in your dog’s ears. This includes redness, swelling, discharge, or foul odor. If you notice any of these symptoms or if your dog appears to be in pain, consult with your vet immediately.

Proper ear maintenance can prevent a variety of health problems, including ear infections and hearing loss. By cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears regularly and keeping an eye out for any changes or signs of discomfort, you can help keep your furry friend healthy and happy.

If you’d like more information about the importance of ear cleaning for Shih-Poos, check out our article on the Importance of Ear Cleaning for Shih-Poos. You can also read our guide to Top 3 Ear Cleaning Products for Shih-Poos and our guide to Understanding Shih-Poo Ears for more tips and advice.

Preparing for Ear Cleaning

Preparing For Ear Cleaning
Before you dive into cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears, it’s important to properly prepare. This will not only make the process smoother for both you and your furry friend but will also ensure that you have everything you need to clean their ears safely and effectively. Below are some essential items to gather and steps to take to ensure a successful ear cleaning session. By taking the time to prepare, you’ll be setting yourself and your Shih-Poo up for success.

What You’ll Need

When preparing to clean your Shih-Poo’s ears, it is important to have the right tools and supplies in order to ensure a safe and effective cleaning process. Here is a list of what you’ll need:

Cotton Balls:These will be used to wipe away any dirt or debris from your dog’s ears.
Cotton Swabs:These are optional, but can be helpful in removing any stubborn wax build-up.
Ear Cleaner:It is important to choose an ear cleaner that is specifically designed for dogs to avoid any irritation or infection. Make sure to read the label carefully and follow the instructions.
Towel:Have a clean towel on hand to dry your dog’s ears after cleaning.
Treats:While not necessarily a tool or supply, bringing along a few treats can help to make the experience more positive for your Shih-Poo.

Having these supplies on hand will make the ear cleaning process easier and more effective, but it is important to remember to always proceed with caution and gentleness when cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears.

Step-by-Step Guide to Safely Clean Your Shih-Poo’s Ears

Step-By-Step Guide To Safely Clean Your Shih-Poo'S Ears
Ensuring your Shih-Poo’s ears are kept clean is an important part of your furry friend’s hygiene routine. Routine cleaning can help prevent infections, ear mites and can alleviate discomfort caused by wax build-up. Regular ear checks can help you spot any potential problems before they worsen. In this section, we will provide a comprehensive guide on how to safely clean your Shih-Poo’s ears and keep them in tip-top shape. By following these simple steps, you can help your furry friend avoid ear infections and maintain overall good health.

Step 1: Examine the Ears

Before starting the ear cleaning process, it is essential to examine your Shih-Poo’s ears thoroughly. This step will help you identify any potential problems or issues with your dog’s ears. Follow the steps below to examine your dog’s ears.

Step 1Begin by gently petting your dog, making them comfortable and relaxed.
Step 2Take a closer look at their ears, checking for any signs of infections or irritations, like redness, swelling, or a foul smell.
Step 3See if there are any discharge, pus, or excessive wax build-up in their ear canals.
Step 4Palpate their ears gently, feeling for lumps, bumps, or any signs of pain, and watch for any signs or symptoms of discomfort in your dog, like shaking their head, scratching their ears, or rubbing their face against furniture.

It is crucial to establish this examination step as a routine so that any problems can be detected and treated early. If you have noticed any issues or symptoms, it is recommended to seek advice from your veterinarian before proceeding with cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears.

Step 2: Gentle Cleaning

After examining your Shih-Poo’s ears, it’s time to move on to gentle cleaning. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do it effectively and safely:

Step 1
  • Put a few drops of ear cleaning solution (make sure it’s pet-safe) on a cotton ball or pad.
  • Carefully place the damp cotton ball in your Shih-Poo’s ear, gently rubbing the base of their ear to distribute the solution.
  • Use a fresh cotton ball to wipe away any debris or excess solution.
Step 2
  • Use a damp cotton ball to clean the folds and crevices around the ear.
  • Be sure to keep the cotton ball on the outer layer of the ear – it should never be inserted too deeply into the ear canal.
  • Repeat this process on the other ear, using a fresh cotton ball for each ear.

Remember to be gentle when cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears as their ears are sensitive. Avoid using cotton swabs or any other tools that could potentially damage their ears. If your Shih-Poo struggles or becomes agitated during the cleaning process, take a break and try again later.

Cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears regularly is essential to prevent infections, discomfort, and hearing loss. So make sure to add this to your pet care routine!

Step 3: Dry the Ears

After cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears, it is essential to dry them thoroughly to prevent moisture from causing infections. Here are the steps to safely dry your Shih-Poo’s ears:

Step 1:Use a clean and dry cotton ball to gently remove any excess moisture from the ear canal.
Step 2:Take a separate cotton ball and gently wipe the inside of the ear flap.
Step 3:Repeat the process on the other ear.

It is important to avoid using wet cotton balls or other materials to dry your Shih-Poo’s ears since it can lead to a nasty infection. Additionally, avoid using cotton swabs since they can push debris and wax further into the ear canal.

If your Shih-Poo shakes their head after cleaning their ears, the excess moisture may fling out, so be sure to keep the area around them clean.

Follow these steps when cleaning and drying your Shih-Poo’s ears to keep them free of infection and maintain good ear health.

Cleaning Ear Wax Build-up

Cleaning Ear Wax Build-Up
As a Shih-Poo owner, you strive to keep your furry friend healthy and happy. However, sometimes ear wax build-up can occur, causing discomfort and potential health issues for your pet. As perplexing as it may seem, this is a common problem in many dogs, but it’s essential to deal with the issue as soon as possible. In this part of the article, we will discuss how to gently and safely remove earwax build-up in your Shih-Poo using softening and removal techniques. These tips will help your furry companion feel more comfortable and avoid any potential irritation or infection.

Step 1: Soften the Wax

Removing ear wax build-up can be a bit tricky, but there are a few simple steps you can follow to make it easier. The first step is to soften the wax to make it easier to remove. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Step 1: Choose the Right Solution
  • Not all ear cleaning solutions are created equal, so it’s important to choose the right one. Look for a solution that’s specifically designed for dogs and is safe to use. Avoid solutions that contain alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or any harsh chemicals, as these can irritate your dog’s ears.

  • Step 2: Apply the Solution
  • Once you have the right solution, it’s time to apply it to your dog’s ears. Squeeze a few drops of the solution into each ear and massage the base of the ear for about 30 seconds. This will help the solution penetrate deep into the ear canal and soften the wax.

  • Step 3: Let the Solution Sit
  • After massaging the solution, let it sit in your dog’s ear for about 5 minutes. This will give it time to work on the wax and make it softer and easier to remove.

  • Step 4: Wipe Away the Solution
  • After 5 minutes, use a cotton ball or soft cloth to wipe away any excess solution from your dog’s ear. Be gentle and don’t push the cotton ball too far into the ear, as this can push wax deeper into the ear canal.

  • Step 5: Repeat if Necessary
  • If your dog’s ear wax is particularly stubborn, you may need to repeat this process a few times. However, be sure to only do so if your vet advises it, as over-cleaning your dog’s ear can actually make the problem worse.

Softening the wax is an important first step in cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears. By following these simple steps and using a gentle, safe ear cleaning solution, you can help keep your furry friend’s ears clean and healthy.

Step 2: Remove the Wax

The next step is to remove any excess wax buildup that may be lingering in your Shih-Poo’s ears. It’s important to be gentle during this process and to avoid causing any discomfort or pain to your furry friend.

Here’s how to safely remove wax from your Shih-Poo’s ears:

Step 1: Apply a few drops of ear cleaning solution into your dog’s ear canal. This will help to soften any wax that may be stuck to the ear canal.

Step 2: Gently massage the base of your dog’s ear for 20-30 seconds. This will help to break up the wax and allow it to move closer to the ear opening.

Step 3: Using a clean cotton ball, gently wipe away any loosened wax from the ear canal. Be sure to avoid inserting the cotton ball too far into the ear canal, as this can be painful for your pup.

Step 4: Repeat this process as necessary, making sure to use a new cotton ball for each ear.

Remember to never use cotton swabs or any other sharp objects inside your dog’s ears, as this can cause injury and damage to the ear canal. If you encounter any resistance while cleaning your dog’s ears or if you notice any excessive redness, discharge or foul odors, it’s important to stop and consult with your veterinarian.

When to See a Vet

When To See A Vet
Despite your best efforts to keep your Shih-Poo’s ears clean, there are times when professional intervention may be necessary. If your Shih-Poo appears to be in pain or is exhibiting signs of discomfort, such as whimpering or shaking their head, it may be a sign of a more serious issue. Similarly, if you notice any discharge or an unpleasant odor coming from their ears, it’s important to consult with a veterinarian as soon as possible.

Another sign indicating that it is time to seek veterinary care is if your Shih-Poo has a sudden loss of balance or a change in their behavior. This can indicate an infection inside their ear or other underlying health issues that may require medical attention.

Additionally, it’s important to keep track of your Shih-Poo’s ear cleaning schedule and ensure that their ears are consistently cleaned on a regular basis. If you notice that ear wax buildup is becoming a common problem or if they appear to have chronic ear infections, it’s essential to have them checked by a vet.

If you have any concerns about your Shih-Poo’s ears or if you notice any changes in their behavior, it’s crucial to get them the proper medical attention they need. By keeping their ears clean and addressing any issues promptly, you can help ensure that your furry friend stays happy and healthy for years to come.

Tips for Maintaining Clean Ears

Keeping your Shih-Poo’s ears clean and healthy is essential for their overall well-being. Here are some tips to help you maintain clean ears for your furry friend.

1. Regular Cleaning: Regular ear cleaning can prevent ear infections and other ear-related problems. It is advised to clean your Shih-Poo’s ears once a week.

2. Avoid Water: Avoid water from getting into your dog’s ears, especially during a bath. Moisture can lead to ear infections. Use cotton balls to prevent water from entering the ear canal.

3. Observe your dog’s behavior: Keep an eye on your Shih-Poo’s behavior, especially during outdoor activities. Check their ears for debris, grass seeds, and other foreign bodies. If you see something unusual, consult a veterinarian.

4. Grooming Habits: Maintain good grooming habits for your Shih-Poo. Hair in the ear canal can trap moisture and lead to infections. Trim the hair around the ears and clean the ears regularly.

5. Use proper cleaning solutions: Use only veterinarian-recommended cleaning solutions to clean your Shih-Poo’s ears. Avoid using alcohol-based cleaning solutions as they can irritate the skin and damage the ear canal.

6. Be gentle: While cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears, be gentle and use a soft cloth or cotton ball. Do not use cotton swabs as they can cause damage to the ear canal.

By following these tips, you can ensure that your Shih-Poo’s ears remain clean and healthy, reducing their risk of developing ear infections and other ear-related problems. Remember to always consult a veterinarian if you notice anything unusual about your dog’s ears.


After following this step-by-step guide, your Shih-Poo’s ears should be clean and free of wax buildup. Remember, regular ear cleaning is an important part of your pup’s overall health and hygiene. Neglecting ear cleaning can lead to painful ear infections and hearing loss.

It’s important to use caution when cleaning your pup’s ears to avoid causing any discomfort or injury. Never use Q-tips or insert anything into your pup’s ear canal. If you notice any signs of discomfort or irritation during the cleaning process, stop and consult with your veterinarian.

By cleaning your Shih-Poo’s ears regularly, you can prevent ear infections and keep your pup looking and feeling their best. It’s recommended to clean your pup’s ears at least once a month, but this can vary depending on the individual dog and their ear health.

Remember to always use gentle and safe cleaning solutions specifically formulated for dogs’ ears. These solutions can be found at most pet stores or purchased from your veterinarian. Avoid using any harsh chemicals or solutions not intended for dog use.

Following these tips and maintaining clean ears will ensure your Shih-Poo’s comfort and health for years to come. As always, consult with your veterinarian for any concerns or questions regarding your pup’s ear health.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can I use cotton swabs to clean my Shih-Poo’s ears?

No, it is not recommended to use cotton swabs as they can push debris further into the ear canal and cause damage.

2. Can I use regular soap to clean my Shih-Poo’s ears?

No, regular soap can be too harsh and irritate the sensitive skin inside the ears. Use a specially formulated ear cleaner instead.

3. How do I know if my Shih-Poo’s ears need cleaning?

If your Shih-Poo is scratching at their ears frequently or if you notice a foul odor or discharge, it’s time to clean their ears.

4. Do I need to clean my Shih-Poo’s ears after every bath?

No, it’s not necessary to clean their ears after every bath. Clean their ears only when necessary or as recommended by your veterinarian.

5. Can I use vinegar to clean my Shih-Poo’s ears?

There are some natural remedies that involve using vinegar, but it’s best to consult with your veterinarian for proper guidance and recommendations.

6. How deep should I clean my Shih-Poo’s ears?

You should only clean what is visible on the surface of the ear canal using a gentle touch. Avoid going too deep into the ear canal to prevent damage.

7. Can ear cleaning prevent ear infections in my Shih-Poo?

Regular ear cleaning can help prevent the build-up of wax and debris, but it may not completely prevent ear infections. Consult with your veterinarian for preventative measures.

8. What if my Shih-Poo is resistant to ear cleaning?

Some dogs may be resistant to having their ears cleaned, it’s important to be patient and make the experience as gentle and positive as possible. You can also try using treats as positive reinforcement.

9. Can I clean my Shih-Poo’s ears without help from a veterinarian?

Yes, ear cleaning can be done at home but it’s important to consult with your veterinarian for proper guidance and recommendations tailored to your specific dog.

10. What should I do if my Shih-Poo experiences discomfort during ear cleaning?

If your Shih-Poo experiences discomfort, stop immediately and consult with your veterinarian. Discomfort may be a sign of an underlying ear issue that requires medical attention.


Britta Thygesen

Britta Thygesen

A passionate dog owner and a full-time certified dog trainer. Aspires to make DogCareHacks a go-to place for all the doggo info. Shares personal experience and professional knowledge.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

      Leave a reply

      Dog Care Hacks