Do you see your cat excessively scratching and shaking its head? It may have an infestation of ear mites. Ear mites are highly contagious among cats and can cause ear irritation, inflammation, discharge, and even hearing loss if left untreated. You must have run several internet searches on how to pick the best oral cat flea medication for your cat, or other related searches, right?
Thankfully, there is a simple and inexpensive treatment you can try at home – rubbing alcohol. Rubbing alcohol, or isopropyl alcohol, has properties that can dehydrate and kill ear mites on contact. It is available and inexpensive, making it an appealing first-line treatment option.
However, keep in mind that using rubbing alcohol as a treatment method comes with particular considerations and potential risks. You can always try alternative solutions if this doesn’t work. We also listed down some other solutions if you have any doubts about rubbing alcohol.
What Are Ear Mites?
Ear mites are parasitic bugs that stay within the ears of cats. They feed on the skin and wax within the ear canal, and they could cause a variety of signs and symptoms, such as:
- Ear itching
- Head shaking
- Scratching at the ears
- A dark, waxy discharge from the ears
- Odor from the ears
What are the Causes of Ear Mites?
Cats can have parasitic insects like ear mites through contact with other infested pets, indoors and outdoors. They can also get it in contaminated areas and environments. So, it is also advisable to buy them medicated shampoo to keep them pampered and free from ear mites.
How Are Ear Mites Treated?
These little ear mites can be dispelled in many different approaches. The most common form of treatment involves using a medication that is applied directly to the inside of the cat’s ear. This medication effectively kills the mites and gives your cat a comforting relief.
Other treatment searches you may be fascinated by include: “best ear drops for cats”, “how to pick out the best-medicated cat shampoo for your pet”, and “Oral medications for cats”.
Can Rubbing Alcohol Kill Ear Mites in Cats?
Some articles say rubbing alcohol can kill ear mites in cats. Unfortunately, it is not the best option for treating ear mites because rubbing alcohol contains harsh substances that could aggravate the pores and mucous membranes of the cat’s ear.
Be careful not to let a certain amount of it touch your cat’s whisker, as it may lead to gastrointestinal issues for super-sensitive cats. Also, rubbing alcohol can cause skin dryness and irritation to your cat’s ear.
How is Rubbing Alcohol Used?
To use rubbing alcohol to treat ear mites, you will need to:
- Fill a small cup with rubbing alcohol.
- Tilt your cat’s head to one side and gently pull back the ear flap.
- Use a cotton bud and apply a small amount of rubbing alcohol to the inside of the cat’s ear.
- Repeat instructions 2 and 3 for the other ear.
- Allow the rubbing alcohol to dry completely before letting your cat go.
You should repeat this treatment 5-10 minutes per day for seven days. It will help kill both the adult mites and their eggs, breaking the life cycle of mites.
Observe your cat within seven days. If your cat’s symptoms do not improve, you should take them to the veterinarian for further treatment.
What Are the Alternatives to Rubbing Alcohol?
While it can be powerful in a few cases, some remedies can be generally safer and extra appropriate to your cat’s sensitive ears. These include medications like:
- Topical medications – these are the creams, ointments, lotions, and patches we apply to the infected area of our pet.
- Ear drops – these are applied directly into the cat’s ear canal.
- Oral medications – these could be tablets and capsules.
- Medicated shampoos – these are applied depending on your cat’s skin condition.
How to Choose the Right Treatment for Ear Mites in Cats
Prevention is better than cure. Consider using preventive measures to reduce the risk of future ear mite infestations.
The best way to choose the appropriate treatment for ear mites in cats is to talk to your veterinarian. Your veterinarian may recommend regular ear cleaning and monthly preventive products to protect your cat.
It’s okay to consult our friend Google and take a search like: “how to find the right itching medication for your cat”. They can give you a solution, yet, your veterinarian can examine your cat’s condition and suggest the most suitable remedy for them. Still, you can never get wrong in seeking professional treatment.
Conclusion: Some Final Thoughts on the Effectiveness of Rubbing Alcohol to Kill Ear Mites in Cats
While rubbing alcohol can be effective against ear mites in cats, it’s not the recommended treatment. Consider using a saline solution to refresh your cat’s skin and avoid severe dryness. When managing ear mites in your cat, we must be cautious in giving them the proper remedy.
Rubbing alcohol can be a simple and value-effective solution for moderate cases, but it could lead to inflammation, discomfort, and dryness in your cat’s pores and skin. So, it’s best to find other options specifically made to combat ear mites.
Some cat owners also ask, can cats drink coconut water? The answer is YES! Coconut water helps their bodies stay hydrated and reduces the potential for infestation. It is able to treat all cats in the household, even if they are not showing symptoms, to prevent re-infestation. And it can improve your cat’s health.
If symptoms persist after several alcohol treatments, consult your veterinarian immediately. They will give your cat the proper medication to ease their ear irritation. Although it may cost you a penny, it is not a waste when it comes to your feline friend. So do it, and maybe your cat may give you a paws up!