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High Risk Breeds: 20+ Dog Breeds Predisposed To Ear Infections

Dog Ear Infection Dogs
Who doesn’t love floppy, droopy, long-eared canines? There’s not a more entertaining slow motion video than that of a long-eared dog shaking its head. And when they run toward us with those bouncing ears and wagging tail it’s like a prescription for instant happiness. It’s hard to imagine a down-side, right? Unfortunately, ear infections are common to our furry-eared friends so here is a helpful list of the top twenty dog breeds predisposed to ear infections along with some pro-tips on how to help prevent this potentially harmful condition.

Hairy-Eared Breeds

Hairy Eared Dog Breeds
That’s right. Hairy ears are one of the leading causes of ear infections in dogs. That extra hair can cause a back-up of wax which is the perfect sticking point for dirt and grime. This makes hairy dog ears the perfect place for bacteria and yeast build-up. Hair also holds onto water and can make it difficult for our pup’s ears to dry completely. These are also small dogs with hair and ears that are often splashed with water and dirt as they go on walks or enjoy the yard. This constant presence of moisture and grime can lead to infections year-round, rather than being limited to the rainy season.
  • Bichon Frises
  • Lhasa Apsos
  • Maltese, Poodles
  • Schnauzers
  • Shih Tzus

Hound Breeds

Hound Dog Breeds
Ear infections can hound these breeds because their ears are long and heavy. Even when their ears bounce while running they never really flop very far because of the weight. Adorable as this may be, it means their ears never really dry out after getting wet, and their ear canal can be a dark welcoming place for mites and bacteria. Plus, hounds tend to keep their nose to the ground, exploring scents and mucking through dirt and puddles. This means their face, and ears, are closer to the very environment that supports ear infections.
  • Afghan Hounds
  • Basset Hounds
  • Beagles
  • Bloodhounds
  • Coonhounds
  • Dachshunds
  • Foxhounds

Sporting & Working Dogs

Working Dogs
Two groups of long-eared breeds prone to infection are the sporting dogs and the working dogs. But these pups are not just at risk because of their ears. The typical activities of sporting dogs are active and outdoors, which can lead to time in the water. Gun dogs, like setters, are bold and boisterous but their pendant shaped ears and outdoor lifestyles leave them at greater risk. Labradors are famous for being water dogs and are prone to ear problems because of their love for swimming and their genetic predisposition for infection-prone ear canals. Working dogs are also typically found outside, guarding fences and gate, such as Bullmastiffs. Or they can be helping with search and rescue efforts, such as Newfoundlands. Sporting dogs and working dogs share a love of the outdoors that can lead to a range of problems, not the least of which is ear infections.
  • Bullmastiffs
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniels
  • Chesapeake Bay Retrievers
  • Cocker Spaniels
  • Dobermans
  • English Setters
  • Golden Retrievers
  • Irish Setters
  • Labrador Retrievers
  • Newfoundlands
  • Portuguese Water Dogs
  • Springer Spaniels
We love our pups, and nobody wants to risk their health or see them uncomfortable or in pain. In some cases, ear infections can lead to hearing loss and other serious problems. Always consult a vet when we are concerned about the health of our droopy-eared companions, but keep in mind, we can also use preventative treatments. Plus, there are at-home options for the care and treatment of ear infections. EcoEars Dog Ear Infection Treatment is a natural way to keep ears clean and provide relief. Thankfully, It’s safe and can be used for both, the prevention and treatment of ear infections with no discomfort to our loyal friends. Regardless of our dog breed, it can be a puppy parent best practice to keep some of this on-hand, so we are prepared. If we decide to partner with one of these twenty dog breeds that are predisposed to ear infections, we just need to be prepared with the right tools and expectations. Expect occasional ear infections. Expect furry companionship. Expect to be won over by adorable, floppy, droopy, hairy ears.

Michelle Lievense

Michelle is a writer and ghostwriter, specializing in wellness, sustainability, and global social change. She is particularly fond of serving ethical organizations who contribute to a better life for people and animals through humane and environmentally responsible missions. At Vet Organics, Michelle uses her time as a vet tech, her academic studies in animal science and behavior, and nearly a decade working on a ranch teaching animal husbandry to write on a variety of cat and canine health topics. When she isn't writing, Michelle can be found hiking in the mountains of Colorado with her dogs or snuggled up with a good book and her cats.

What Customers Are Saying


EcoEars by Vet Organics fixed our girl's ears in the first couple of days & she was a whole new, happy dog again. THANK YOU Vet Organics!!!*

Nikki Wiedmer


EcoEars is a great product! I used it in my Lacey's ears and we haven't had any problems since.

Bonnie Schweitzer


Thank you for the peace of mind that my dog is not in discomfort anymore, thank you for this product being organic and good for our dog's ears, and seriously thank you for giving us an...

Melissa Block Demant


I used this product for my Boston last summer. Worked awesome. In 2 days, I've seen a improvement. Within 4 days, the infection was gone. My pit bull started having an issue with his...

Tina Neupauer


This stuff really works--after spending money at the vet @ $25 a bottle, it's saving me a lot of money.

José Olivo

*Results may vary based on factors such as age, size and physical condition of your pet.