Could allergies cause ear infections and what food is best?

Our question this week was:

Dr. Debra – Please help…My dog has had problems with ear infections for nearly 5 years. The vet always said it is a yeast infection and prescribes Otocalm. It clears it up for awhile, but it always comes back. I took him to be groomed today, and the groomer noticed he's losing the hair on his ears…the hide/leather is showing through. The vet said its allergies and wants me to put him on a prescription dog food. I haven't read good things about Science Diet d/d (which she recommended), so I'd like to know if there are any other good hypoallergenic dog foods to choose from. I've tried searching the web, but it's confusing. He's currently eating Nutro Ultra.


Kelly Lawson


Hi – thanks for your email. You wrote that your dog has recurrent ear infections and allergies are suspected. I'm sorry to hear that. Many dogs with allergies have recurrent ear infections, which can be very frustrating. One possible cause of the allergies is a food allergy. Treatment of a food allergy feeding a food that is considered anti-allergic.

Food allergy is a common type of allergy. The most cost-effective and the simplest way to deal with this possibility of a food allergy is to do a food trial with a hypoallergenic diet. It is important that you work with your veterinarian to choose the right food and to stay on that food for at least 8 weeks or longer.

We have an article that might really help you. It is called Atopy in Dogs. Also – we have an article on ear infections called Otitis Externa in Dogs.

Best of luck!

Dr. Debra

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