DIY Essential Oil Dog Ear Wash Spray for Ear Infections

One of the most common reasons dogs are seen by veterinarians is due to ear infections. However, you can safely and effectively treat ear infections at home with a healthy diet and using my DIY Essential Oil Dog Ear Wash Spray for Ear Infections (avoiding the hassle, cost and toxic side effects)

Essential Oil Dog Ear Wash Spray for Ear Infections

What are ear infections an how do dogs get them?

Canine ear infections are most often caused by bacteria or yeast overgrowth. Ear mites, growing hair, trapped water, tumor or foreign body in the ear canal can also lead to an overgrowth of bacteria or yeast. Infections may also develop when allergies, immune system disorders, hypothyroidism or an excessive amount of ear was are present.

Frequent bathing, swimming and using incorrect cleansing methods can also lead to infections. Because a dog’s ear canals plunge downward then horizontally from the ear opening, it is difficult for caught debris or water to be released as it must work it’s way upward to escape this makes dogs especially susceptible to ear infections (even more so with floppy ear breeds).

Also a diet that contains grains (corn, wheat, soy, etc) and more than moderate amounts of carbohydrates can feed yeast infections and also cause chronic inflammation and damage to their immune system, setting a a predisposed dog for even more ear infections.

How can I tell if my dog has an ear infection?

The following symptoms may indicate your dog has an ear infection:

  • Ear Scratching
  • Brown, yellow or bloody discharge
  • Foul or offensive odor coming from the ear
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Crusted or scabby skin on or near the ear
  • Hair loss around the year
  • Wiping or rubbing their ears on the floor, ground or furniture
  • Head shaking or tilting their head
  • Loss of balance, walking in circles
  • Unusual eye movements
  • Hearing loss

In conventional veterinary medicine, infected ears are often treated with oral antibiotics, tropical drugs or even surgery. The problem is that none of these treatments is a cure for the root cause of the infection, they are only treating/masking the symptoms. As soon as the dog eat another wrong food, goes for a swim, has a build up of was or in some way triggers another reoccurrence, the infection is back and most often worse.

Many ear infections, especially in puppies, stem from immune system imbalances caused by vaccinosis, a reaction to their vaccinations. They can cause mucoid discharge in puppies. For example, it’s not uncommon for puppies to have discharge from their eyes or develop conjunctivitis after the distemper vaccine.

NOTE: If your dog develops a suspected ear infection for the first time, or if it’s contain is especially severe/painful, seek veterinarian care to rule out a tumor, polyp or some other issue that requires medical attention.

Essential Oil Dog Ear Wash Spray for Ear Infections

Does my dog have a Yeast Infections:

An under active immune system can lead to a yeast overgrowth, because it can’t keep things in balance. The other end of the spectrum is an over active immune response where allergies are present, and can also attribute to a yeast overgrowth.

Dogs with allergies (a sign of a damaged/overactive immune system) are typically prescribed steroid therapy to shut off the immune systems’ response. This treatment does not address the underlying cause of the allergy it only stops the unwanted symptom. When your dog’s immune system is turned off with drugs, it can not do it’s job of regulation and balancing so a yeast overgrowth continues.

When conventional vets see dogs with allergies and possibly a secondary skin infection they will prescribe antibiotics. Antibiotics are well-known to destroy ALL GOOD BACTERIA while attempting to kill the bad bacteria. These antibiotics most often make a bad situation worse in the long run.

Another reason an allergic dog can end up with a yeast overgrowth, is he can develop an allergy to the yeast itself. Intra-dermal tests often reveal that a dog is having an allergic response to it’s own natural flora. This situation can be very problematic because the dog’s allergic response can affect his whole body. These dogs are often plagued with red, inflamed and irritated skin over their entire body.

Signs and symptoms of a yeast overgrowth in dogs

A definitive diagnosis by a vet of a yeast infection is accomplished by either a cytology (looking at a skin swab under a microscope) or by culturing (submitting a sterile saw of the skin to a lab where the cells are grown and identified in a petri dish).

As a pet owner, you’ll be able to tell if your dog has a yeast overgrowth/infection just by it’s smell. Yeast has a very characteristic odor, some people think it smells like moldy-yeast bread, cheese popcorn or corn chips. In fact people often refer to a yeast infection of a dog’s paws as “Frito Feet.” It’s a pungent, musty unpleasant smell. Another sign of a yeast infected dog is intense itching.

How to cure a Yeast Overgrowth in dogs

It’s rare that a dog has yeast in just one spot, it will most likely be present in more than just one ear. Both ears, ears and paws, all four paws, if your dog has a reoccurring ear infections or if his entire body has some symptom of yeast overgrowth, you have no choice but to proactively address his diet.

Yeast, just like all other living organisms, need a source of energy. Carbohydrates are their fuel and by eliminating them from your dog’s diet you can effectively treat and prevent a yeast overgrowth. You will want to avoid any product containing honey, high fructose corn syrup, white/sweet potato, carrots, wheat, rice, corn – essentially feeding them a low carbohydrate (high fat & protein diet)

Changing your dog’s diet is the most critical step you can take to having healthy dog!

And it is why we’ve chosen to specifically feed our dogs a raw diet. If you aren’t interested in feeding a raw diet, you can find many options for grain free dog foods.

What are Ear Mites?

Not every ear infection is an “infection” sometimes it’s a infestation. Ear Mites are tiny parasites that eat ear wax and oils in the ear and fill the ear canal with black waste. The problem is most common in dogs from pet shops, puppy mills, shelters or breeders with unclean environments.

Ear mites are species specific. Feline ear mites prefer cats’ ears and canine ear mites prefer dogs’ ears, however it is possible in a mixed pet household for both dogs and cats to be infected with the same type of ear mites. The ear mite bites to the ear tissue can also ulcerate the ear canal and lead to secondary infections.

How to Clean your Dog’s Ears

Healthy ears start with a weekly maintenance exams and cleaning with cotton balls and cotton swabs. The canine ear canal isn’t straight like our ears canal and this makes it less likely to cause damage while cleaning (remember how the canine ear canal changes direction, it’s almost a 90 degree angle)

Lift the dog’s ear flap while holding a cotton ball between your thumb and index finger, push the cotton downward into the ear’s opening and scoop upward. Use a few dry cotton balls to clean out any normal waxy buildup.

Next put a cotton swab gently vertical into the ear canal until it stops, then scoop upward while rubbing it against the walls of the vertical canal. Repeat as needed depending on how much debris is in the ear.

How to use Essential Oil Dog Ear Wash Spray

After the excess debris is removed from the ear, lightly spray (3-4 times) the inside of your dog’s ear flap or spray an organic cotton ball with my Homemade Essential Oil Dog Ear Wash Spray  and wipe around and it to the ear canal.

Essential Oil Ear Wash Spray (for Ear Infections)

You do not want to drip oils or cleaners into the ear canal because they will end up collecting on the ear drum where they can cause infection. By using a light spray mist you can lightly distribute the essential oil blend without over saturating the area.

When using essential oils, it’s imperative to use high quality oils. Do not use cheap oils! Click HERE to learn the 5 Reasons I Switched to Rocky Mountain Oils.

Yours in Health,

Hayley Ryczek


Essential Oil Dog Ear Wash Spray for Ear Infections

Essential Oil Dog Ear Wash Spray for Ear Infections

One of the most common reasons dogs are seen by veterinarians is due to ear infections. However, you can safely and effectively treat ear infections at home with a healthy diet and using my Essential Oil Dog Ear Wash Spray for Ear Infections (avoiding the hassle, cost and toxic side effects)
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  • Shake well. Use as described above.
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  1. First of all I would like to address the fact that Haley has the most comprehensive and educated information site I have ever come across, that being said…If you read all the questions and comments from Haley 9 out of 10 times your answer will be on the site. For people who are new to EO, PLEASE INVEST in Book on all EO’s it will also answer a ton of questions on issues & daily uses. Thank you Haley for such a Wondermous site.
    PJ Taylor from Arkansas, y’all have a Blessed day.

  2. Hi, Hayley,
    I’m wondering if you’ve ever used jojoba oil for this in place of the FCO. FCO is tough to find in my area but I have jojoba on hand.

  3. 5 stars
    I am so happy that I found this, I have an amazing 7 year old Scottish Terrier. She has had an ear infection that has been just terrible. I feel so bad for her, the smell is horrible. I am a natural healer, so I was so excited when I found this sight!!!!! I mixed it up and went to work on Gypsy, she felt relief immediately 😍🥰

  4. I have recently started treating my bulldogs skin issues with EO and they work amazingly. I googled this tonight as he has frequent ear infections and I am now a hige believer in EO use . I have all of the EO’s except basil…is there another EO I can use in its place that I might have?

  5. One more question. I have Geranium Rose EO. Do you think that would work the same as just Geranium?

    1. Hey June – I took a look at the search function on my site and it does indeed work. What can I help you find?

  6. Interesting. Never heard of this method before. I used to use cotton swabs or go to the vet. Next time I will try to apply this method. Thanks!!!

      1. Fractionated Coconut Oil is liquid and is often recommended for EO blends. Our Lhasa has had lifelong ear issues. I’ve recently started using EO’s in our home for many health reasons, and will now give this treatment a try to relieve the discomfort our sweet Buster experiences.

  7. When my dogs where yeasty, before I changed to full half cooked raw. ( Due to to sensitive tummies) I read that a few drops of Apple Cider Vinegar added to their food twice a day, helped to kill off the over growth and balance their gut bacteria. Also get good gut bacteria add to their food like kefir, fermented vegs. greek yogurt, or coconut milk yogurt for those that can’t do dairy. All these little changes help balance the gut! Read articles of www.dogsnaturallymagazine.come for lots of info on yeast, gut, diet.

  8. To get rid of the ear infection, how many days should I do the treatment for? It honestly seemed to have been completely gone after the first day but I want to make sure I don’t have to treat it for a certain amount of days to completely kill the infection.

    1. none. there is no Arborvitae in this recipe or anywhere on my blog. I’m not sure why you are asking.. the recipe is CLEARLY written out.

      1. There is a picture that shows arborvitae with the other EO on Pinterest. That is how I found your site. I’m about to mix up your spray and give it a go.

  9. Hi there, thank you for the great information. I did have a question though I think you
    might be able to help me with. I was wondering, What cancer treatments
    do you think are actually beneficial versus just providing hope or over treatment with no net benefit?
    If you could provide a little insight I would greatly appreciate it!

  10. What if you’re allergic to lavender? I can’t have it touch me or I break out in hives, and I can’t smell it because it makes me nauseous. Is there a substitute to the lavender?

      1. You can use chamomile in place of lavender. Lavender is a great antiseptic and also very soothing. Another bonus is that dogs hate the taste and smell so if there is a would that fido can get to, lavender may help out. Chamomile is great for soothing and inflammation. Try to avoid letting him ingest but since it’s the ear, you should be fine.

        I just realized how old this is. Maybe it will help the next person.

  11. one of our dogs suffers from one ear constantly having that brown stuff in his ear and smelling and he although he does not constantly scratch at it we go in and clean it out every few days. We have taken him to vet to have it cleaned the first time it happpened thinking he got water or dirt and a simple infection. Second time we had to take him to vet for same problem on same ear they said it will be a problem he will have his entire life and we will have to just have to keep cleaning it out and wanted us to use a solution of water and vinegar diluted and increase vinegar strength to a point as long as he could take it or his skin could take it. Well could not get past the First level so we stopped that and just used cotton swabs every few days to get out the clumps. Well since dealing with essential oils and being a wellness advocate I decided to look on Pinterest to see if there was an oil blend that could be used and that’s when I ran across this . Making up a batch this evening and cleaning out the ear I just sprayed a squirt and he went ballistic rubbing on everything. It’s in there and not going anywhere but I believe it was just not having anything being squirted into his ear he just freaked. It did not drip down but it is in there to start the healing

    1. Ear issues are almost always linked to the food your a feeding your dog. Much like humans when we are not fueling our bodies, we become sick. His ear is the symptom of an underlying cause. I recommend switching to completely grain free, even treats. No rawhides (choose raw beef bones) and if possible switch to a Raw or lightly cooked homemade diet.

      1. Have been spraying just once at night cause my dog goes nuts when we spray in his ear. Tonight we used a qtip dipped in the oil and he still did not like the oil and rubs that ear on the ground. Past few nights his ears have been ok but tonight he did have an unusual build up like before we started. Is that normal for it to do that or are we doin get something wrong?

  12. Is there anything else besides germanium, I don’t have any but I have the rest of the oils to make the spray?

    1. The recipe/ingredients are listed in the post. that’s all thats in it. I’ve never used it omitting the geranium so I cannot speak to how effectively it will work without it.

  13. Can this spray be used on paws? We have been battling ear infections and “frito paws” with my 1.5 year old chocolate lab. I have used YL oils on myself and kids for 10+ years, and would like for my dog to benefit from them. Also any other recommendations on application in ears because my dog is very fearful of spraying in ears. Feeding her Canidae Grain free.

    1. Sure the spray is fine on paws too. Our Hercules HATES spray bottles, so I just put a little on a cotton ball and swipe it into his ear.

  14. I have a German Shepherd. We have had her at every vet in our area , no vet has been able to come up with a relief for my dog
    The Vets are telling us that it is the most difficult and hardest bacteria to get rid of. They are calling it Rods Bacteria
    Has anyone else had this bad of a bacteria n used this spray and gotten any good results.

  15. I plan to use the recipe for the essential oils to treat chronic yeast infection in my dogs ears, but there was no reference as to how often to apply it. Could you please reply with the appropriate application protocol ?Thanks,

  16. So much conflicting info about treatment. Many say t0 put drops of olive oil, for example, deep into the ear canal. You recommend avoiding oil or liquid around ear drum, which I agree with. I once used castor oil/lavender to massage my dog’s ears. The symptoms did go away fairly quickly, but I’ve never poured anything into the canal. My dog is shaking his head quite frequently. Olive oil massage seems to be helping.

    1. there’s not really anything to go “off” in this mixture. I would recommend making a fresh batch ever 2-3 months.

  17. My cocker spaniel has a yeast infection all over her skin as well as her ears. Can I use this on her hot spots as well as her ears?

    1. You need to address his yeast infection internally as your #1 priority. Switch him to a completely raw diet – no grains what so ever. Use coconut oil liberally on his skin.

    2. A few years ago, my daughters dog almost died from some odd skin infection no vet could diagnose. She switched him to a raw diet. In fact his food staple is raw meat. Of which he prefers freezer burnt. Lol! His illness healed up and he has been fine since. Just a thought.

  18. Thank you so much for the recipe! My dog is a rescue dog and had issues before I got her. She is a Lhasa Apsa and truly a best friend. She has chronic ear infections and I have tried everything. Various routines of antibiotics, ear washes and even had her ear scoped in an effort to find out what was going on in her ear. After spending $500 for the scope procedure the vet could find nothing and recommended an MRI to see if there were any tumor involvement. The cost of the MRI is not within my budget ($3,000). I recently discovered essential oils and they have helped me with some issues I was having. I decided to see if there was anything for her ears and an Internet search included your article. I made the ear spray/wash and applied it at the time she was starting to shake her head. I sprayed the solution on a cotton ball and applied it to her ear. I am amazed with the one small application, my dog has had the most relaxing evening she has had in weeks and no head shaking! Thank you so much for posting the recipe! A real life saver!

    1. Liz – thanks for your comment and for rescuing your fur baby! Make sure you are addressing her ear issues internally as well with a completely grain free diet, too!

    1. Cats can be very sensitive to essential oils, with that in mind I would not suggest using it unless you throughly researched the oils and cat safety. Then I would use it diluted in 4 oz FCO instead of 2 oz, if the oils are safe. I am not as well versed in cat-oil safety as dogs, I’m sorry I can’t give you better guidance.

  19. So, I found this recipe last week, and bought the oils, but now arborvitae isn’t in the ingredient list? How much do you recommend adding, and why did you take it out/

    1. Jen – you may add 10 drops of Aborvitae if you wish. Many people were not able to find it, so I’ve been testing the spray w/out it and it works just as well without. I’m sorry for the confusion. I will be adding a note in the recipe tomorrow regarding the change, I intended to do so today but I forgot!

  20. Hi, I only have YL oils. Is there something comparable to Arborvitae that I can use, since I don’t have Doterra oils? Thanks for this article, I can’t wait to share with my mom, whose dog has chronic ear infections!

  21. Cocker spaniel , no Cherie’s and fruit and veggies for treats….some table scraps…he has anaplasmosis..and a bad heart on top of the ear condition..is on days quoin for joints, blood pressure medicine, pain medicine, and a water pill…feel bad for him, because I don’t know what to do anymore, he won’t even stay outside anymore only to go potty. Maybe it’s because he can’t hear, but when we were camping, he stayed outside a lot

    1. Barb – I’m so sorry 🙁 I’m not sure what to do since he’s on medications that can cause ear issues and/or prevent them from healing. I would search for the blue powder ear treatment and try that – using it every day…

      1. Thank you…seriously thinking of putting him down, don’t want to but really what choice do I have, he is a very unhappy dog at this point

          1. Thank you,,just don’t know what to do, haven’t made up our minds yet, but I hate seeing him in pain, although he hides it very well….thank you for your information

    1. If his ears are very bad, I recommend seeing a vet to rule out infections that can cause hearing loss in this case. Better to be safe than sorry. Hope your dog feels better, in the future work at prevention before it gets this bad.

      1. Has been bad and been to the vets, has had one ear canal remover 3,300. Dollars vets just keep giving antibiotics that don’t work..am at a loss of what to do

          1. 4 Health…it’s grain free…have had chronic ear problems for about 6 years, he is 11 years old, we also give him fruit and veggies

          2. What about his treats and chewies? Are you giving him coconut oil or fish oil supplements? What kind of dog?

      2. Hi in regards to dog inflammation in the ears I safely use 2 drops of PURE OLIVE OIL 100% natural and instantly your dog will recover. I use Physician’s Choice ear wax removal aid it’s safe for humans pets.

    2. Hi, May I make a suggestion?
      I’m guessing that your pet has been on kibble all its life?

      I would be concentrating on the pets immune system. The immune determines our pets health and it’s obvious that your pet has a problem which you need to address if you want your pets health.
      Vets do not treat the underlying problem, but the symptom. Consider taking your pet to a holistic or homeopathy vet. Or, if you are on Facebook, there are some good support groups there who are willing to help your pet, I know because I run one of them and we deal with dogs and ear problems which have been worded by conventional vets and their lack of nutritional education.

      Strong immune= thriving pet, not surviving pet

      There are quite a few things that can affect the intestinal bacterial balance in a pet’s gut (immune system), thus causing an imbalance and this is when we see anything from allergies, to ear infections, yeast, cancer and other diseases..
      Vaccinations, stress, genetics, poor unbalanced diet, commercial treats, prescription drugs, pollutants, treated water, tobacco smoke, incense, air-fresh, environmental changes, chemical fertilisers, herbicides, pesticides, worm and flea treatments etc.

      Eliminate these thing while, strengthening the immune and you should see an improvement

      We must always look at the whole picture and limit the amount of harmful things we expose dogs to throughout their lives.

      1. I forgot to mention… The first thing you can do for your pet is to transition to a raw diet. Processed foods, fruit and veg are not good for any dog suffering from yeast or infections. There are certainly a few fruit and veg they can have later on, once their immune has healed and recovered and they are still limited at this time.

        A nutritional raw diet: its never to late to make a difference to the health of your pet.
        I wish you all the very best. x

  22. Is it safe to put it into the dogs ear canal, not just on the inside of the dogs ear flap but deep down into their ear canal to fight off any infection? (To explain what I mean, for example: a human can clean the inside of their ear canal with a q-tip) I don’t mean to be overly specific but I want to make sure I ask this question right before doing something to my dog that could potentially hurt her.

    1. I’ve used it safely in my dogs ears. Your just lightly spritzing and very little actual liquid gets deep into the ear.

  23. Hi there, you say how often to use the ear spray, but not HOW to apply it. Would you elaborate on how you actually apply it to the dog’s ears? Thanks!

  24. What essential oil brand do you use? What is Arborvitae? And do you lift the ear (like in the picture) and spray it? Then do you wipe it? Sorry, but I’m trying to find a natural solution to my dogs constant ear infection. I think the dog food has changed and now I have to find another one, because he’s now began another chronic ear infection… poor thing!

    1. Cathy – raw diet is best, if that won’t work for you then at least do grain free, limited ingredients. I just hold his ear up and give it a sprits then wipe out. I am using Young Living Essential Oils and love them.

          1. Hayley
            I’m interested in hearing why you switched from doTerra to YL. I’m a YL advocate. I have a friend that went with doTerra. I’d love to hear what you say about reasons why you switched

    2. I have used this 30 year old remedy on my bichon for 13 years and it works great. It is the blue power ear treatment.
      I replace the alcohol with witch hazel.


    3. You can get doTERRA from me! Known as the “tree of life,” Arborvitae is majestic in size
      and abundant in unique benefits.
      Arborvitae also has natural insect repellent properties.
      Also known for its ability to protect against common threats in the
      environment. Because of its natural preserving properties,
      Arborvitae prevents wood from rotting, which makes it
      popular in woodcraft and for preserving natural wood
      • Add a few drops to a spray bottle with water and spray

      1. Is it once a day or just once a week? My poor baby gets swamp ear and I just got done cleaning and looking for a natural solution. Once a week doesn’t seem like enough to get rid of his infection, I just want to be clear. It already seems to be soothing him with this first round.

        1. if there is an infection you would want to use it more often, for general prevention and cleaning, use it weekly.

          1. Hi there, thank you for all this helpful information. I just made the solution for my dogs ears. I used it yesterday for the first time. I have already noticed less head shaking but today noticed the inside ear flap is slightly Red I’m assuming from one or more of the oils. Is this something you may have noticed at all while using it?

          2. Typically a little redness is just from scratching and shaking – and even wiping out their ears. It goes away as the ear heals.

    1. Since I do have personal experience with ear mites I can’t say for sure, however the spray won’t hurt and I would try it before any chemical mixture.

    2. Yes, this mixture will definitely rid ear mites. Must be consistent,and use thru 2 mite life cycles to prevent reinfestation. Add clove oil to kill the mite eggs as well. I recommend a day or 2 break from these oils after first ten days then a day off every week, or 2 days off every 10, still using the coconut and or Olive oil without additions on those break days. Expect the mites to create what will appear to be a bad reaction to the oils, in protest. Don’t stop! If great discomfort seems to be hadn’t your pooch, add a drop off of lidocaine to an half ounce of the oil mixture to use until the toxins causing appearance of initial reaction has passed. Once passed, of course as with any thing, eliminate use of mixture with lidocaine n resume the above (but save for another time just in case, will keep for quite a while if stored well). Do note also, that if it appears there needs to be a break day at any time passed initial mite protest, go ahead n give it a day or two rest. Some of the oils can be a bit harsh on the skin (yeast and bacteria often protest too lol. 1 to 2 days break won’t allow too much regrowth, theres no resistance build up to essential oils, and the coconut and/or Olive oils will keep everything in check while soothing in the meanwhile as well. Good luck!

    3. I forgot to include substitute the basil with oregano oil. I think anywaycant yet see my previous answer. Truly hope this helps, good luck!

        1. Goes rancid too fast? That’s strange because I’m most situations it will last for years and years, that’s one of the amazing reasons to use it.

    1. Olive oil organic olive oi is best. Olive oil alone has cleared up my dogs ear infection before. I love it but def need to stay on a strict 2 times a day till no signs are left. The oils will increase the healing and help support healthy ears 🙂

    2. You could also use organic cold pressed castor oil. Castor oil is rich in antioxidants, has anti fungal and antibacterial properties so can be used to promote healthy skin.
      Remember, the best defence for ear problems is a strong immune, so look at hints that are compromising your dogs immune and treat accordingly while using these topical treatments

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