Why Do Cats Have Black Discharge in Ears?


Oftentimes, when the owner sees black discharge from cat’s ear, they don’t pay a lot of attention to it. They think it might be just piled up dirt and dust and, therefore, they try to clean the ear with ear sticks. Or even worse, they do nothing to eliminate the problem. Common opinion that this black discharge makes no harm to the pet is wrong.

Reasons why Discharge Develops

Appearing black discharge in cat’s years is a very widespread, but you shouldn’t think it’s harmless. The pet is suffering from severe discomfort. This disease has its own name – otodectic mange and is caused by such alien invaders as ear mites. Another misconception holds that this disease affects only outdoor cats. But don’t think that your indoor cat is safe and the disease will never affect it. Every cat can catch this disease, even if your cat is kept in sterile conditions. Ear parasites can be brought home even by humans when they come inside after walking on the street with no idea that their feet soles are now covered with ear mites. When a pet starts developing otodectic mange, there are specific symptoms the owner should pay close attention to.

  • dark discharge in cat's earsThe pet starts act restless, shakes its head and constantly scratches its ears trying to paw inside. You can hear that there’s something sloshing inside the ear. However, these symptoms are also common with the ones for developing otitis, that is why when these symptoms start to show up, you should take your cat to a veterinarian as soon as possible in order to determine the reason behind such weird behavior of your cat.
  • Ear mites multiply so actively, that the owner will be able to see discharge even after two weeks when the pet first got the mites. If you want to check your cat’s ears, you should carefully take your pet into your arms, caress it, so the cat is calm and is not afraid. Next you need to roll the ear and examine the ear auricle from the inside. If you see black discharge, chances are your cat is ill. These discharges can take many forms. When your cat is healthy, the ears are clean and have no smell. However, if ear mites affected your cat, you may notice some black smelly discharge from cat’s ear.
  • If the disease has already reached the advanced stage, you might spot crusty build-up in the ears. That is a signal that the cat is unable to cope with severe mange and tries to scratch the ear from the inside and take out parasites which results into wounds.

The sooner you take care of your cat, the better. Otherwise, you and your pet will spend countless days cleaning your cat’s ears.

Diagnosis and Treatment

in cat's ears dark dischargeBefore announcing diagnosis, vet doctor might ask you some question about daily life of your cat, food it eats, activities, any diseases in the past. Apart from ear mites, ear discharge may be the result of some allergy or reaction on previous medication. Only veterinarian, after they examine and take skin scrapings, can make a precise diagnosis. This procedure usually takes time, as scrapings are examined under microscope. After magnifying skin scraping, your vet will be able to see ear mites moving. It is possible to provide treatment to your feline at home. There are many products capable of dealing with ear mites; you can easily spot them in vet pharmacies or in pet shops. You also need to follow your vet instruction so your cat won’t develop ear deafness.

The incubation period of ear mites is 21 days. Don’t forget about this period while you treat the ear.

Make sure you spend enough days cleaning and applying medication on your cat’s ear so not only grown up mites are killed. Otherwise, lay eggs then hatch, and new ear mites are ready to disturb your cat. So the previous treatment would in cat's ears black dischargecount as useless. Before applying any medication that your vet prescribed, you need to remove as much black liquid from cat ear as you can. By doing so and removing ear mites you will provide a better way for medication in your cat’s ear and will ease unendurable itching. Majority of cat owners choose ear lotion Rosinka by Api-san to provide ear cleaning for their pets. This lotion is sold in a convenient medicine bottle with an ear dropper. You just have to place few drops in your cat ear, make it go and massage the ear. You have to follow the dose instructions and watch how much of lotion is permitted in one ear at a time so you won’t put too much liquid in the ear. If you know your cat may react too aggressively to this procedure, it is better to put the body of your cat into a towel or a blanket beforehand After you message your cat’s ear with medication, it is better to use cotton pads to remove black smelly discharge from cat’s ear, you may also use cotton sticks to remove tiny bits of black discharge either. This should be done very carefully; you don’t want to do any harm to your pet’s ear canals. Once the cleaning is done, it is time to start a course of treatment with special drops that will help to deal with ear parasite and its future offspring. The most common medication prescribed is Amitraz, Amit and Akromektin. The duration of a course must be also recommended by a vet.

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