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My new Sphynx kitten has Ear Mites!

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Well, as some of you may know from experience if you have owned this breed for a while and have had one, two, or three of these wonderful creatures then you may remember when you first took your little cute baby Sphynx kitten home and followed your breeders contract and went to the vet within 48 hours. You may have experienced this..... EAR MITES!

Because of how quickly the build up of wax and debris your Sphynx cat will encounter on a weekly basis, you need to clean your Sphynx cat's ears, and we recommend to clean them at bath time. Here is a great video on cleaning Sphynx kittens ears. We use Epi-Otic ear cleaning solution which can be purchased through your vet or online.


What are ear mites you say? Ear mites are a tiny spider like parasite that infect the ears of dogs and cats. They usually live in the ear canals but can live on other parts of the dog or cat's body as well. Ear mites are the most common cause of ear infections seen by vets in cats and dogs.

Ear mites thrive in the warm moist area where there isn't much air flow. They feed on epidermal debris & ear wax. Ear mites burrow into the ear, causing inflammation and irritation which the body responds to by producing more wax.

You say to yourself, "Oh my god! How can these people sell me a Sphynx kitten infested with ear mites!" Well, although this may be the case, it generally is not with the Sphynx breed. Because of the lack of hair inside the ear like most cats they already have lots of dirt and wax build up so when seeing the vet, especially a vet who has never had experience with the Sphynx breed, this is their first diagnosis, "EAR MITES!"

What are the symptoms? Ear mites are very uncomfortable for your Sphynx cat. Imagine how it would feel having thousands of little spider like creatures running around in one of your most sensitive areas of the body, the ear. Usually the first symptom you notice will be your Sphynx cat scratching his ears or shaking his head like a mad cat.

You may notice that your Sphynx cat's ears are flattened or laid back like the cat from "Pet Cemetery". His ears may be painful to touch and he may cry or hiss when you touch them or while he is scratching them. You may also notice a foul odor coming from your cat's ears.

Cats may cause damage to their ears by scratching them. Often their ears will bleed as a result of this. They may also shake their ears with such intensity that small blood vessels are broken. So you need to see the vet if any of these symptoms persist!

If you have a look inside the ear of an infected Sphynx cat you will see dark reddish brown or black debris throughout the ear canal which has been described as looking like coffee grounds. This debris comprises of ear wax, blood and Ear mites are visible to the naked eye and can be seen as white dots among the dark debris. You may even see them moving around.

Your vet will look in your cat's ear with an otoscope and may inspect the debris from the ear under a microscope for a definite diagnosis. Ear mite infections can be serious if left untreated resulting in damage to the ear canals.

So if you are a new Sphynx owner and the vet instantly diagnosis your cute little brand new baby Sphynx and his dirty little ears with Ear mites, be sure your vet takes a look under the microscope before phoning your breeder and telling them how filthy their animals are! And how dare they sell a kitten in this condition!

By the way, It does not hurt to treat an animal for ear mites "just in case" either.

Always see your vet when in question!
 
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