lots and lots of qtips. My husband helps me hold are bassets head so I can get all of that dirt out. He doesnt like it too much but we give him a treat afterwards also it helps to usea warm damp wash cloth before you use q tips cause it helps loosen all of that dirt
I have to agree with Twinkie's Mum about the Q-tips- I think they could be dangerous.Commercial ear cleaning solution may be the best option for you, although I know some people have their own recipies that I know they would be glad to share. You just squirt a small amount of solution into the ear, rub gently, then use cotton balls to wipe. A basset ear canal is very deep, so you have to make sure to insert the cotton ball all the way to the end. If you don't get all the way in, the wax buildup can lead to infections. If you're not confident at first,ask your vet tech to demonstrate how it's done. I clean Murray's ears once each week, some dogs need it more often and some less. There should be no sour odor coming from the ear.
I use baby wipes. It was suggested on this website and works very well ...and they are safe. I use the ones with aloe. We've used all kinds, though. Sometimes it takes two for each ear, if Belvedere has been rolling about. But he doesn't seem to mind the cleaning.
We previously used a liquid squirted on a cotton ball and I think he felt the "drip" and it unnerved him. He's as calm and patient as one can expect a Basset to be, using the baby wipes.
I use baby wipes as well with both bassets. They actually seem to really enjoy having their ears done that way and will press up against my leg and moan and roll their eyes into their heads while I clean their ears that way. *lol* Sometimes the other one will get impatient and try to push in on the action.
I clean the kids ears weekly. I use rolled cotton. I once lost a cotton ball in Maggie Mae's ear! I got it out after awhile but once was enough. Now I leave enough haning out so I can't lose the cotton. I use regular Listerine. That's what the breeder said she uses. Oh course, that's if there is no ear infection.
To effectively clean the ears you must get deeper than you can safely reach with a q-tip, cottonball or babywipe. Use a liquid cleaner store bought or homemade. for Maintenence it should have a drying agent the minimizes the conditions that leed to bacterial or yeast/fungus micobial growth such as alchol. In ears that are imflamed because of an infection I avoid alchol based cleaners because they can be extremely painfull and irretating to the sensitive tissue.
A lot of the dis comfort and object dogs have to ear cleaning stems from the temperature differential of the cleaning solution and the ear. If as in a baby's bottle you warm it to body temperature the dog will be more confortable. Using a bottle with a despensing spout squeeze the cleaner directly into the ear. Massage the base of the ears with you hand for 5 to ten minutes ( and yes it will seem like an hour) It should produce a squishy type sound when you do, If not, add more cleaner. After the five to ten minute of massaging the cleaner deep in the ear canal stop. The dog will shake his head quite violently to remove the cleaner and in so doing it also removes the debris the cleaner and massaging loosened. Then you can follow up with a cottenball, baby wipe or what I prefer cotton pad to wipe the ear dry and remove aditional debris.
If the ear are again full of wax and debris in a day or two it is very likely the dog has a bacterial or yeast infection. Simply cleaning the ear is not likely to solve the problem. A trip to the vet for a culture and the appropriate antibacterial or antimirobial medicine is advised.