How to cure ear mites in horses

Written by amy l. gouger
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How to cure ear mites in horses
Put a halter and lead on the horse before administering the medication. (horse image by Lena Tambovtseva from

Horses rarely get ear mites, and the condition often gets confused with ticks or lice in the ears. A diagnosis of ear mites requires that a veterinarian remove a sample of the ear wax where the mites thrive, and look for mites under a microscope. Symptoms of an ear mite infestation include droopy ears, sensitive ears, rubbing the ears, tilting the head to one side and dark waxy discharge. The veterinarian, if he finds an ear mite infestation, will probably prescribe ear drops, of some form, for you to administer to the horse.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Ear solution
  • Dispenser

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  1. 1

    Prepare the solution or ear drops as directed by the vet. He might recommend a mixture of mineral oil and a commercial small animal ear or tick solution. This depends on the vet's preference and the severity of the infestation.

  2. 2

    Grab the base of the ear with your right hand for his right ear and the left hand for his left ear. Position your elbow to block his view of the dispenser.

  3. 3

    Coat the interior of the ear from tip to base, releasing the entire amount of solution into the ear. Let the entire solution drain into the ear before releasing the ear. Repeat this for the other ear. Repeat as directed by the vet.

Tips and warnings

  • Horses with ear mites frequently display a sudden dislike of ear touching and putting on the bridle.
  • Other sources of similar symptoms include ticks, bacterial infection, growth or foreign body lodged in the ear canal.

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