The Best Essential Oils for Cleaning Dog Ears & Fighting Infections + Mites

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Fall is my favorite season in Minnesota, the temperatures are cooling down, it’s perfect for bonfires, and the leaves are changing.

However, there is one significant drawback when it comes to fall, and that’s allergies.

Fall has always been a difficult season in our home since both Calvin and Sophie suffer from extreme allergies.

Though they are on allergy medicine, fall causes their symptoms to worsen and brings on ear infections.

It is not uncommon for dogs who suffer from allergies to be more susceptible to ear infections.

Keeping Sophie and Calvin’s ears cleaned helps to prevent ear infections, though sometimes that isn’t always enough.

Though there is a variety of methods to clean our dog’s ears, we have recently started using essential oils.

Previously, we used over the counter products. Though they work pretty well, a friend recently suggested trying essential oils.

She said that she thought they were more effective and less abrasive on her dog’s ears.

The Importance of Keeping Your Dog’s Ears Clean

Importance keeping dog ears clean with essential oils infection mites
Photo by Uwe Gille (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Cleaning your pup’s ears is essential as a preventative measure to keep ear infections at bay, as well as a way to monitor the health of the ears.

In addition to ear infections, dogs can also get ear mites or even excess debris build-up.

If these issues are left unattended, it can lead to greater problems.

Using Essential Oils to Clean Your Dog’s Ears

How to use essential oils to clean dog ears fight infection ear mitesMany of the essential oils that are good for keeping your dog’s ears clean are also used for fighting infection and ear mites.

So, cleaning your dog’s ears with essential oils regularly can help to prevent both ear mites and ear infections.

Also, it is good to note that many of these oils benefit from blending with other oils to help boost their natural properties.

I have listed some excellent essential oil options, how to use them, and recommendations for over the counter (OTC) products that contain essential oils.

I mix my own essential oil blends, but for those who prefer the convenience of using a premixed solution, there are some excellent OTC options.

The Best Essential Oils for Your Dog’s Ears

OilLatin NamePrimary UseCarrier OilPrice
CalendulaCalendula officinalisInfectionsAloe Vera, Coconut Oil, Olive Oil$

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EucalyptusEucalyptus globulusCleaningAloe Vera, Coconut Oil, Olive Oil$$

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GeraniumPelargonium graveolensFungal InfectionsCoconut Oil$$$

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OreganoOriganum vulgareCleaningAloe Vera, Coconut Oil, Olive Oil$$$

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LavenderLavandula angustifoliaBacterial InfectionsCoconut Oil, Olive Oil$$

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NiaouliMaleleuca quinquenerviaCleaningCoconut Oil$$

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PeppermintMentha piperitaEar MitesOlive Oil$$$

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Tea Tree Melaleuca alternifoliaEar MitesOlive Oil$$$

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The Best Essential Oils for Cleaning Your Dog’s Ears

Oregano Oil

Oregano antibacterial antiviral antiseptic antifungal essential oil for dog ears
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Oregano oil possesses antibacterial, antiviral, antiseptic, and antifungal properties making it a perfect oil for cleaning and preventing a variety of ear infections.

Oregano oil can also be used for treating ear infections.

Coconut oil can also be used to treat ear infections

How to Use It

Oregano oil is best used with coconut oil, olive oil or aloe vera juice[1].

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If you are using it in liquid form, drop 1-2 drops into the ear and massage gently.

Let you dog shake its head afterward to help disperse the oil and break up debris.

If you are combining it with coconut oil and leaving it as a solid, a small amount can be applied using a cotton pad and wiped on the outer ear canal and flap.

To boost its natural effects, oregano oil can be blended with:

  • Eucalyptus
  • Lavender
  • Tea Tree
Product Recommendation

Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus pure therapeutic grade essential oil benefits dog ear canal
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Though eucalyptus is generally a gentle oil, it still possesses a strong fragrance.

Eucalyptus needs to be diluted to ensure it doesn’t irritate your dog’s nose or skin.

Eucalyptus is a potent antibacterial, anti-fungal, and antiseptic, making it perfect for cleaning your dog’s ears.

How to Use It

Eucalyptus oil can be diluted with coconut oil, olive oil, or aloe vera to make an ear wash.

It is best to use it in liquid form to be able to use it as a wash.

After properly diluting the oil, drop 1-2 drops into each ear. Next, gently massage your dog’s ear to work the oil in. Finally, allow your pup to shake its head to better distribute and aid in breaking up debris in the ear canal.

To boost its natural effects, eucalyptus oil can be blended with:

  • Oregano
  • Tea Tree
  • Lavender
Product Recommendation

Niaouli Oil

Using niaouli essential oil keep dog ears clean pros cons cautions
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Niaouli is a potent antiseptic, which makes it ideal for cleaning our dog’s ears.

In addition to its antiseptic properties, it is also an anti-inflammatory and can be used to ease discomfort from bug bites.

Niaouli Oil is also suitable for ear infections and ear mites.

For those who dislike the smell of tea tree oil, niaouli is known to have a more appealing fragrance and can be used for most of the same issues as tea tree oil.

How to Use It

Niaouli oil is best diluted with a liquid to create an ear wash.

However, if you are treating bug bites or inflammation from ear mites or infection, niaouli may be combined with coconut oil and used as a salve on the outer ear canal or flap.

To boost its natural effects, niaouli oil can be blended with:

  • Lavender
  • Eucalyptus
  • Tea Tree
Product Recommendation

The Best Essential Oils for Treating Your Dog’s Ear Infection

Lavender Oil

Plant therapy lavender essential oil uses canine dog pet health
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Lavender is one of the useful oils. Lavender can be used to relieve an array of ailments, including ear infections.

Lavender works as an antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antiseptic, making it the ideal oil to treat ear infections.

How to Use It

Lavender oil is best used with coconut or olive oil; both oils possess antibacterial properties.

It can be used in either liquid or salve form.

But to administer it to the ear canal, it must be in liquid form.

If you need to treat sores or external areas around the ear canal, it can be mixed as a salve or liquid and applied using a cotton pad.

To boost its natural effects, lavender oil can be blended with:

  • Tea Tree
  • Geranium
  • German Chamomile
Product Recommendation

Geranium Oil

How to use geranium oil to fight dog ear infection dilute with carrier coconut oil
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Geranium oil works best for fungal infections[2].

Though it can work for bacterial infections, it has stronger antifungal properties.

An added benefit of geranium oil is that it can also help to relax dogs.

How to Use It

Though other carrier oils can be used, coconut oil is best as it also aids in fighting ear infections.

Mix geranium oil with coconut oil and apply a few drops into the ear canal.

Using another essential oil that is also an anti-inflammatory with the geranium oil would be best to help soothe irritation caused by the ear infection.

To boost its natural effects, geranium oil can be blended with:

  • Niaouli Oil
  • Lavender
  • German Chamomile
Product Recommendation

Calendula Oil

Calendula oil to fight bacterial fungal infections in dog ears
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Calendula, also called marigold, has anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic properties, making it the ideal remedy for ear infections[3].

The benefit of using calendula oil is that not only does it fight off infection, but it also soothes the irritated skin.

Calendula oil can be used for cleaning your dog’s ears.

How to Use It

Calendula oil works best with olive oil, coconut oil, or aloe vera juice.

It is best used in liquid form so it can be dropped down into the ear canal

However, coconut oil is best as it also fights infection, since it contains both antifungal and antibacterial properties.

To boost its natural effects, calendula oil can be blended with:

  • Oregano
  • German Chamomile
  • Lavender
Product Recommendation

The Best Essential Oils for Treating Ear Mites in Dogs

Peppermint Oil

Can you use peppermint oil to fight ear mite infection in dogs
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Peppermint oil is a natural insecticide, and because it also has anti-inflammatory nature, it will both get rid of ear mites and treat inflammation.

Additionally, peppermint acts as an antibacterial and will help manage infections caused by ear mites.

How to Use It

Combine peppermint oil with olive oil. Olive oil is a natural antibacterial and is a moisturizer that can help soothe bug bites.

Put a few drops of the peppermint oil into the ear canal as well as wiping the ear flap and exterior of the ear canal with a cotton pad.

To boost its natural effects, peppermint oil can be blended with:

  • Oregano
  • German Chamomile
  • Lavender
Product Recommendation

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil deal with dog parasites essential oil blend soothe dog ears
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Tea tree oil is a strong antiseptic, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and insecticide oil.

Tea tree oil is one of the most useful oils as it can be used for a large variety of issues[4].

Because of its many properties, tea tree oil is the optimal choice for ear mites as it can treat the mites, infections caused by the mites, and relieve inflammation.

Tea tree oil can also help fight ear infections (both fungal and bacterial) and clean your dog’s ears.

How to Use It

Combining tea tree oil with olive oil is best.

Once correctly mixed, it should be dripped into the ear canal and massaged in.

For any sores or inflammation on the outside of the canal or ear flap use a cotton pad to swab oil directly on areas of irritation.

To boost its natural effects, tea tree oil can be blended with:

  • Eucalyptus
  • Geranium
  • German Chamomile
Product Recommendation

Other Helpful Oils for Your Dog’s Ears

Helpful essential oils for dogs German chamomile anti inflammatory pain reliefThe oils listed above are the ones most commonly used to treat different issues.

In addition to them, other oils can be blended to help reduce inflammation, relieve pain, or even fight infection:

  • German Chamomile is one of the most powerful anti-inflammatories
  • Marjoram works as an antibacterial and helps with sores caused from itching or mites
  • Myrrh helps with skin inflammation and is a good insecticide

Over the Counter Products with Essential Oils

If you don’t want to mix your own doggy ear cleanser then you can try these OTC remedies:

Final Thoughts

Essential oils are beneficial to help treat and prevent ear infections and mites.

One of the things I like best about essential oils for treating my dogs’ ears is that many of the oils can be used together.

I found that blending a few essential oils with coconut oil is best.

Coconut oil has a multitude of beneficial properties and can be used in both solid and liquid forms.

Also, I like that the oils soothe my dog’s ears while at the same time treating the infection

Plus, I don’t worry about the oils having an adverse effect causing more discomfort to their already painful ears.

And of course, the smell of the essential oils is far more pleasant than OTC ear cleaners, which can smell a lot like chemical fertilizer!


  2. Peiris, Shehan. Essential Oils For Your Pet. Shehan Peiris, 2015.
  4. Essential Oils Natural Remedies, Althea Press, 2015.

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