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Haematoma in Neville’s ear

Neville has a problem with his right ear. A little bubble appeared on his ear flap last week and it has been growing bigger and sorer. There is no soft tissue in the ear to form a bruise, so dogs will often develop ear haematomas if there ear is injured. At PAH we mostly see these haematomas in big dogs like Labradors with itchy ears – they get them from scratching. Neville thinks he is a big dog…. but he might have had a fight with Percy the kelpie.

It is possible to drain a hamatoma of the ear, but they usually return and need surgery. Neville comes in to PAH for surgery under general anaesthetic. His blood tests are all normal and he is safe to proceed.

Neville is given pain relief at the end of surgery and a long acting antibiotic injection. He has pain relief syringes to be given by mouth for the next few days. Neville is much more comfortable now the haematoma has been drained.

Two weeks later Neville is back in the vet to have his sutures removed. All the swelling has disappeared, the ear is not sore and the wound has healed well. Neville will probably have a slightly bumpy right ear from now on but it has healed well.

Most of the time we get haematomas in much larger dogs. They are very common in Golden Retrievers and Labradors. These will often have stents sewn in to pad the ear. Below is a haematoma on a Golden Retriever – sorry they are quite bloody pictures.

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