Cauliflower Ear In Dogs – Causes, Symptoms, And Treatments

Cauliflower Ear In Dogs
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Cauliflower ear is a dog disease that affects the ear cartilage of animals like dogs. It is largely noticeable that cauliflower ear in dogs appears in those that have long ears.

However, it cannot be ruled out for dogs with a different type of body structure. Cauliflower ears disease is also called an aural hematoma.

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Cauliflower Ear Symptoms In Dogs 

  • Affected Dogs involve in aggressive shaking or scratching of their ears can be affected by cauliflower ears. These dogs will suffer allergic reactions.
  • Consistent tilting of the head by a dog to one side
  • Head jerking/shaking
  • Swollen pinna
  • Pain on palpation
  • Swelling in a part of or completely in the pinna. Pinkish or reddish colour change is visible on the ear/s after such swelling
  • Inner or outer ear infections
  • Excessive bleeding or clotting
  • Pawing at the ear/ears

Cauliflower Ear In Dogs Causes 

  • The reason for Cauliflower ears in dogs is due to an untreated hematoma in the ear of the dog. A hematoma is caused because of violent head shake by a dog in trying to relieve itself from the scratching sensation on its ear.
  • This causes breakage of blood vessels under the skin and then the dog suffers hematoma.
  • Settlement of foreign particles within the ear canal
  • Ear infection
  • Allergies through regular scratching
  • Cartilage damage
  • Fly bites hitting the tips of the ears of dogs frequently

Cauliflower Ear In Dogs Treatments 

Dogs with cauliflower ears can be treated but the stage of the disease calls for the kind of treatment to be adopted.

1. Treatment At Early stage




Vets treat dogs in the initial stage of cauliflower ears by adopting a simple procedure of taking a syringe to eliminate the fluid that is present in the hematoma.

It is noted that dog owners get to know about some home-based treatment to their dogs with mild symptoms of this disease.

How To Treat Cauliflower Ear at Home For dogs?

  • Application of Calendula in tincture form can be applied on the swollen part of the ears of their dog
  • Use of Garlic and Mullen, which possess antibiotic, antiviral and antimicrobial properties can be made into a mixture and some drops of it can be applied on the ears of the dog and massaged softly.
  • A warm compress can remove the excess fluid formed due to hematoma and ease the pain, inflammation, and irritation that happens within the affected ear of the dog.
  • Applying a few drops of vinegar solution i.e. prepared by mixing apple cider vinegar or white vinegar with warm water on the affected ear/s of the dog can kill the bacteria and clear the ears.
  • Oil ear cleaner also has good antibiotic, antimicrobial, and antiviral features. Using this will help in treating the swelling on the affected ears of the dog and also clean its ears.
  • The oil mixture containing neem oil, tea tree oil, olive oil and eucalyptus in needed quantities should be dropped into the ear canal of the dog in small drops. It must be done on a daily basis up to some time period and massaged for the oil to spread.

Other non-surgical treatments

Ear cleaning under anaesthesia and applying antibiotics or ointment into the ear canal of the dog

2.  Treatment At Moderate Or Critical Stage




Dogs that are in the severe stage of the disease are usually recommended for a surgery. The affected dogs in the moderate stage could be advised to be under constant or long-term medication.

It is possible that the vet might operate dogs that are in the moderate stage of cauliflower disease.

The surgical procedure in a stepwise fashion for removing the hematoma that is majorly responsible for cauliflower ears in dogs:

  • An incision is made by the vet surgeon on the earflap of the affected dog where the blood clots and fluid present in the hematoma will be cleared off.
  • To prevent the hematoma from refilling with fluid, some stitches are done on the affected hematoma area.
  • Excision of the ear cartilage could be possible.
  • The sutures or stitches need to be there for at least three weeks to ensure complete healing from the refilling of fluid, which will definitely not happen again.

Prevention Of Cauliflower Ear In Dogs

Two important steps should be followed by dog owners to prevent the occurrence of hematoma or cauliflower disease in their dogs and they constitute:

Monitoring the dog’s behaviour – It is essential for a dog owner to monitor the pet’s behaviour to just check out that it does not involve any violent behaviour. This kind of behaviour might result in injury to the dog’s body inclusive of its ears.

Look out for any infections – Dog owners must regularly look out for whether any sort of infection has attacked their dog. The dog must not be permitted to regularly shake or scratch its head.

However, if the owners happen to see these activities in their dog, then the latter must be taken for a diagnosis of infection and then for further treatment.

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