Published: July 28, 2020  

Last updated: February 6, 2024  

Finding the best dog ear cleaner for a happy, healthy dog can feel overwhelming with all the choices. So many different brands and ingredients, liquid or wipes?

Maintaining the health of your dog’s ears is an important part of his grooming care. You may find your dog’s ears only need an occasional cleaning or maybe your dog has an infection and has brown discharge in his ear. 

golden retriever dog getting his ears cleaned

Whatever the reason you are looking for the best dog ear cleaner, you are in the right place. 

I have tried just about every ear cleaner solution out there, from prescriptions to over-the-counter to homemade solutions.

Our yellow lab rescue, Bear, ears are usually clean but I still wipe them once a month or so. Our rescue mutt, Ginger, that has chronic ear infections because of her allergies. Sometimes I am cleaning her ears every single day when she as an allergic reaction to something. 

I hope this list helps you and your dog keep healthy clean ears!

NOTE: There are a few dogs that have bad reactions to certain ingredients. Please spot test before cleaning your dogs ears with any new product.

Top pick for general cleaning of your dogs’ ears

Virbac Epi-Otic Advanced Ear Cleaner

Many vet techs have reviewed the Virbac ear cleaner and highly recommend it to clean your dogs ears. Some users have switch from Zymox and saw better results.

  • Alcohol-free
  • Non medicated, for general cleaning only
  • Epi-Otic may be used for routine ear cleansing in the healthy ear canal or before administration of other ear preparations

Top pick for ear cleaner for dogs with ear infections

EcoEars Natural Dog Ear Cleaner 

This is the product we use on Ginger’s ears. Hands down, the best ear cleaner for dogs with allergies and yeast infections. You can see her before and after photos here.

  • All-natural ingredients
  • Relief in 24-48 hours
  • Multi-symptom ear treatment, including fungal infections, bacterial infections, yeast infections, ear mites and more
  • 100% guaranteed for a full year
  • 93.7% Success Rate

Top pick with all-natural ingredients dog ear cleaner

Only Natural Pet Ear Wash Cleaner For Dogs

We use many of the Only Natural Pet products, including natural flea and tick prevention, along with health supplements.

  • All-natural ingredients
  • Alcohol-free, making it safe to use as part of a regular grooming routine
  • 100% Happiness Guaranteed
  • Made in the USA

Top pick for dog ear cleaner wipes

Pet MD Dog Ear Cleaner Wipes with Aloe and Eucalyptus

Users have reported that this is an excellent product to keep your dog’s ears clean. The wipes are very moist, have a nice smell and are easy to use.

  • Easy to use, especially if your dog is afraid of the liquid bottle
  • Gentle enough to use regularly
  • Made in the USA

How often should I clean my dog’s ears?

In general, I recommend cleaning your dogs ears once a month. If your dog is prone to ear infections consider cleaning them more often. Talk with your vet and ask for their advice on your dogs ear health.   

How do I clean my dogs ears?

Follow the instructions on the ear cleaner solution bottle. Each product will have different steps to take.

Cleaning your dog’s ears is easy, but you also need to be careful not to damage the inner ear. Using cotton balls and q-tips is safe as long as you do NOT enter the ear canal. 

You will hear many people saying never to use q-tips for dogs, but we use them safely when cleaning Ginger’s ears. In fact, if I didn’t I’d never be able to get all the brown gunk out of her ears. Again, I never enter the ear canal to avoid any damage to her ears. 

A cotton ball soaked in the best ear cleaner for your dog is ideal when cleaning healthy dog’s ears. 

My dog is scratching her ear and shaking her head at night

It sounds like your dog has an ear infection, but you should talk to your vet as soon as possible. Ear infections can range from a simple yeast infection to ear mites or other health conditions. 

It’s very probable that your dog has allergies. This is something we struggle with our dog Ginger. Finding out what your dog is allergic to is key to resolving the scratching and head shaking.

Choosing the right dog ear cleaner — in summary

Remember, all dogs are unique. What works for one dog may not work for another. I prefer to find products that are all-natural. You may need to try a few different ear cleaners before finding the one that works best for your dog and situation.

Please, talk with your vet first if your dog has any problems with his ears.

Please share which ear cleaner works best for your dog, it could help someone else struggling to find the best ear cleaner for their dog too!

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About the Author

Debi McKee

Debi McKee is the expert behind Rescue Dogs 101 where she guides you in your journey of adopting and raising a rescue dog every step of the way. She is a mom of 3 human kids and 4 dogs and volunteers for a local dog rescue and Humane Society. Click here for more about Debi and her passion for helping you and your dog.

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