Why Are My Dog Ears Hot

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By Oluwaseun Bamisile


Have you noticed that your dog’s ears have become unexpectedly hot, leaving you puzzled about the cause? This article aims to provide you with comprehensive insights and explanations.

I will start this piece by discussing various reasons your dog may experience warm ears. Following that, we will discuss steps to take when you encounter such a situation to ensure the safety of your pet friend.

Lastly, you will find answers to a few of the most asked questions related to this topic in our FAQ section.

Causes Of Your Dog’s Hot Ears

Reasons Your Dog Ears Are Hot

A dog’s ears can feel hot for a variety of reasons. While some may not be of significant concern, others could indicate an underlying health issue.

Here’s a detailed explanation of why your dog’s ears might feel hot.

1. Infection

Infection in a dog’s ears can lead to warmth and discomfort. Various factors, such as bacteria and yeast, can cause this infection.

Furthermore, the infection mostly occurs in the external ear canal or surrounding skin, according to pawsafe.com.

When the ears become infected, the blood vessels in the affected area can dilate. Therefore, there will be an increase in blood flow in the ears, causing hotness and redness.

Untreated ear problems can lead to pain, hearing loss, and further health complications for the dog.

2. Allergies

Dogs can develop allergies to various environmental allergens, including pollen, dust mites, mold, or certain foods. When exposed to allergens, a dog’s immune system may react by releasing histamines and other chemicals.

This can lead to inflammation in various body parts, including the ears, as hinted by houndgames.com. Allergic reactions in the ears can result in increased warmth, redness, itching, and discomfort.

Besides, allergies can be chronic and may require ongoing management to relieve symptoms and improve the dog’s quality of life.

3. Fever

Fever is a sign of an underlying health problem, such as an infection, according to betterpet.com. When a dog’s body fights off an infection, the immune response can raise its body temperature, resulting in fever.

Elevated body temperature can affect various body parts, including the ears, making them feel hotter than usual.

Monitoring your dog’s overall condition, including body temperature, is vital when you suspect a fever. It can be an indication of a more significant health issue that requires prompt veterinary attention.

4. Mite Infestations

Ear mites are microscopic parasites that can infest a dog’s ear canal. These mites feed on the earwax and tissue debris in the ear, leading to irritation, inflammation, and discomfort.

When a dog has an ear mite infestation, their ears may become warm due to the inflammation, as suggested by fourpaws.com.

Ear mites are highly contagious among pets. Hence, prompt diagnosis and treatment are essential not only for the affected dog but also to prevent the spread to other pets in the household.

5. Injury

A dog’s ears can become hot due to injury as part of the body’s natural response to trauma. When an injury occurs, several physiological processes can contribute to the sensation of warmth.

One of the immediate responses of the body to injury is inflammation, as suggested by pawsafe.com. When tissue is damaged, the immune system releases inflammatory chemicals and cells to the affected area.

This process is aimed at protecting the injured area, removing damaged cells, and initiating the healing process. Inflamed tissue typically becomes warmer due to increased blood flow as blood vessels in the area dilate, as hinted by healthline.com.

This increased blood flow brings immune cells, nutrients, and oxygen to the injury site. It can also cause heat and redness associated with inflammation.

What To Do When Your Dog Ears Are Warm

If your dog’s ears are unusually warm, it’s crucial to assess the situation carefully and take appropriate steps to ensure your dog’s well-being. Here’s a detailed guide on what to do when your dog’s ears feel hot.

1. Stay Calm and Observe

Remaining calm is crucial when assessing your dog’s condition. Dogs are highly attuned to their owner’s emotions, according to rspca.org.uk.

Therefore, staying composed helps avoid unnecessary stress for your pet. Gently approach your dog without sudden movements or loud noises to avoid startling them.

Observing your dog’s behavior is essential at this stage, as it can provide valuable information about their overall condition. Furthermore, pay close attention to signs of discomfort, such as whining, restlessness, or changes in posture.

Additionally, look for any visible signs of distress, like limping or difficulty moving, which might indicate pain in other parts of the body. By staying calm and observant, you can make a proper assessment of your dog’s situation.

2. Check for Obvious Injuries or Irritation

Begin your assessment by visually inspecting your dog’s ears. Look for any signs of injuries, such as cuts, punctures, or abrasions on the ear’s surface.

However, be gentle when handling your dog’s ears, as they may be sensitive or painful. Also, inspect the ear canal openings for any foreign objects like grass seeds, ticks, or debris, which can cause irritation or blockages.

If you see any foreign objects, resist the urge to remove them yourself. Doing that could push the object further into the ear or cause more damage.

Moreover, take note of any discharge, as this can indicate an ear infection or injury. Redness, swelling, or an unusual odor can also be signs of ear problems.

3. Take Your Dog’s Temperature

Measuring your dog’s body temperature can help determine if they have a fever, which could be a sign of underlying illness or infection. To take your dog’s temperature, use a digital rectal thermometer and lubricate it with a water-based lubricant or petroleum jelly.

Gently insert the thermometer about an inch into your dog’s rectum and wait for the reading.

A dog’s normal body temperature typically ranges from 100.5 to 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit, according to vcahospitals.com. Thus, if your dog’s temperature falls outside this range, it may indicate a fever.

It’s important to note that taking a rectal temperature can be uncomfortable for your dog, so approach this step with care.

4. Assess the Environment

Consider the environmental factors that might be affecting your dog’s comfort. If the weather is hot, your dog might feel warm, including their ears, as hinted by blog.ferplast.com.

Therefore, ensure your dog has access to shade and fresh water to help regulate their body temperature. In extreme heat, dogs can suffer from heatstroke, according to betterpet.com.

Due to this, it’s crucial to take precautions to keep them cool and hydrated.

Similarly, in cold weather, dogs may feel cooler overall, and their ears may be affected. Protecting your dog from extreme cold and providing appropriate shelter and warmth is vital to prevent discomfort or cold-related health issues.

5. Contact Your Veterinarian

If you notice any signs of distress, injury, or discomfort beyond what is considered normal, it’s advisable to contact your veterinarian promptly. Explain your observations and provide as much detail as possible about your dog’s condition.

A veterinarian can offer guidance on whether immediate action is necessary or if it’s safe to wait for an appointment. They may ask about other symptoms to gain a more comprehensive understanding of your dog’s health.

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is It OK For Dogs Ears To Be Warm?

Yes, it is generally okay for a dog’s ears to be warm. However, if your dog experiences discomfort or other symptoms with warm ears, it could indicate an underlying issue.

2. Do Warm Ears Mean Fever In Dogs?

In some cases, warm ears can indicate a fever in dogs.

3. Can I Give My Dog Paracetamol?

No, you can’t. Many painkillers, including paracetamol, are highly toxic to animals.

Administering human painkillers to animals can leave them at risk of severe liver damage and issues with their red blood cells.

4. What Are Symptoms Of Ear Infection In Dogs?

Symptoms of ear infection in dogs include hotness, head shaking, odor, itchiness, pain, and redness.

5. Are Dogs Mammals?

Yes, dogs are indeed mammals.


The warmth of a dog’s ears can be attributed to various factors. Understanding these factors is essential for responsible pet ownership.

Dogs, like all mammals, have a naturally higher body temperature than humans, which can make their ears feel warm. However, pet owners must remain vigilant and differentiate between normal variations in ear temperature and signs of potential health issues.

If a dog’s ears feel unusually hot and are accompanied by other symptoms like redness, it may indicate an underlying problem. Ear infections, allergies, injuries, or other health concerns can increase ear warmth.

Fortunately, this article discusses several things to do when your dog experiences hot ears.

We trust that this article has provided valuable insights and practical guidance. If you have found it beneficial, we kindly request that you consider sharing it with your social media network.

Should you be interested in exploring further articles related to this subject, we invite you to explore our Animal & Pets page.

References And Further Reading

  1. betterpet.com – 5 reasons why your dog’s ears are hot
  2. petcube.com – Warm Ears in Dogs
  3. pawsafe.com – Why Are My Dog’s Ears Hot? Exploring The Causes And Solutions
  4. houndgames.com – Dog’s Ears Are Hot: A Veterinarian’s Guide to Causes and Solutions
  5. acmecanine.com – Why Are My Dogs Ears Hot? What Should I Do About It?
  6. windmillvet.com – Why do my dog’s ears feel hot?

About the Author

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Oluwaseun Bamisile

Oluwaseun is the Lead Content Editor at Ilifeguides.com. He holds a National Diploma in Computer Science (currently studying part-time for his Higher National Diploma). An internet geek with a love for automobiles, he writes relationship articles, travel guides, and general life hacks on the site.

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