Ear mites can cause a number of issues for your cat and, in rare cases, they can even cause issues for humans living with infested pets. Highly contagious, irritating, and sometimes even dangerous, it’s very important to treat ear mites in cats once you have diagnosed the issue.
Are you looking for the best ear mite medicine for cats? Then you’ve come to the right place. But before we list some of our favorite ear mite medicines, let’s take a moment to talk more about ear mites in cats, how they are transmitted and diagnosed, and how you can treat them.
What Are Ear Mites And How Do Cats Get Them?
Ear mites are a species of mite that can live in the ear canals of different animals. They are not species specific.
When it comes to looking for the best ear mite medicine for cats, it helps to first understand what ear mites are and how your cat may have gotten them.
Ear mites are extremely small arachnids similar to ticks and spiders. Though small, they can be seen with the naked eye when one knows what to look for.
While you likely won’t see an ear mite in detail with the eye alone, you can sometimes see small specs of white moving around against a dark background. If you see this in your cat’s ears, you have discovered ear mites.
These parasites live in the ear canal of animals like rabbits, cats, dogs, and ferrets. They feed on skin, oils, and earwax, causing irritation and itching to their hosts. They are not species-specific, which means they can be transmitted from one species to another quite easily.
In fact, ear mites are incredibly contagious. Cats can get ear mites from their environment or from other infested pets like dogs, cats, rabbits, or ferrets. This means that even indoor-only cats can become infested with ear mites.
Scientifically known as Otodectes cynotis, ear mites are believed to be responsible for over 90% of mite infestations in cats. They are also the second most common external parasite to infest pets, with the first parasite known to infest dogs and cats being fleas.
Unfortunately, even the best ear mite medicine for cats will not be able to penetrate ear mite eggs. Most of the best ear mite medicine for cats is designed to target adult ear mites and larvae.
And speaking of eggs and larvae, let’s talk now about the life stages of ear mites.
Ear mites go through five life stages including egg, larva, protonymph, tritonymph (sometimes referred to as deutonymph), and then adult.
Adult ear mites can live for around eight weeks or two months, at which time they are continuously reproducing. Their entire lifecycle takes place in the ear canal of their host. While ear mites can live for a short period of time outside of the ear canal and in other environments, they will not survive long.
Aside from the irritation ear mites can cause your cat, they can also lead to a condition called otodectic mange. Demodectic mange is not life-threatening, but it is highly irritating and painful.
Ear mites can also affect people, though this condition is incredibly rare. Sensitive people who have had contact with infested pets may experience a red, itchy rash on their skin. Again, this is not life-threatening, though it can be annoying.
Secondary infections can be caused due to ear mite itching in cats, which can lead to more serious problems for your cat down the road.
In order to keep your cat healthy, it’s important to diagnose and treat ear mites using the best ear mite medicine for cats you can find.
But how do you know if your cat needs the best ear mite medicine for cats? Let’s talk about diagnosis.
What Are The Most Common Signs Of Ear Mites In Cats?
Symptoms of ear mites include excessive itching and sometimes even a foul odor.
It can be tricky to identify and diagnose ear mites in cats, though when you know what to look for you should be able to diagnose this condition quite quickly.
Usually diagnosing ear mites should be done officially by your veterinarian, though there are some symptoms and signs you can look for at home.
The most common signs of ear mites in cats are listed below.
Your Cat Is Shaking Her Head Repeatedly
If your cat is shaking her head repeatedly as if she is trying to shake something off, this could be an early sign of ear mites. Ear mites are quite itchy as they move about in the ear canal, and your cat will be shaking her head in an effort to remove the pests.
Your Cat Is Itching Her Ears Excessively
Because ear mites are so itchy, cats will also often itch or groom excessively. You may find them rubbing their head along surfaces or pawing at their ears repeatedly. While grooming is normal for cats, excessive grooming and itching are not and could be a sign that your furry friend requires the best ear mite medicine for cats.
Red Or Inflamed Ears That Are Hot To The touch
The constant irritation from ear mites and the consistent grooming and itching your cat is doing to alleviate the irritation could lead to red, inflamed ears that are warm or even hot to the touch.
Extra Ear Wax And Brown, Crusty Discharge
Excessive ear wax and a brown, crusty discharge around the ear is another common sign that your cat may need the best ear mite medicine for cats. This discharge can often resemble coffee grounds in the ear canal and may even have a strong odor.
Hair Loss Surrounding The Infested Area
If your cat is itching and grooming herself excessively, she will likely begin to lose hair around the infected ear. This could be a telltale sign of an ear mite infestation in your cat.
Aural Hematoma (A Blood Blister) On The Ear
Another result of excessive grooming and itching due to ear mites is something known as an aural hematoma. This is a large blood blister that can present itself on the infested ear and is caused by excessive itching and grooming from your cat.
The below video talks more about how to self-diagnose ear mites in cats:
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If you do believe your cat is suffering from ear mites, it’s best to get your cat to a veterinarian as soon as possible. Catching ear mites early is key to ensuring you eradicate the problem before it becomes too severe or secondary infections are caused due to itching and grooming.
Your vet should be able to diagnose for certain whether or not your cat is struggling with ear mites and should be able to recommend some of the best ear mite medicine for cats.
However, if you are certain your cat does have ear mites or if you are looking for medications that can help prevent ear mites in cats, we can help as well.
Let’s take a look now at some of the best ear mite medicine for cats to get rid of a current ear mite infestation and then move on to discuss ways to prevent ear mites in the future.
How To Get Rid Of Ear Mites – Best Ear Mite Medicine For Cats
There are different types of ear mite medicine for cats you can choose from.
There are several types of medications available to treat ear mites, but the best ear mite medicine for cats could depend on your unique cat and your preferences. Most veterinarians will recommend an insecticidal-based ear mite medication.
While these are highly effective, some owners prefer to use alternative methods for treating ear mites, including the best ear mite medicine for cats that are made of natural elements like essential oils and plant-based ingredients.
As with most medications, there are pros and cons to using insecticidal medicines for your cat’s ear mites and natural medicines and remedies.
Before you decide whether natural medicine or insecticidal medicine is the best ear mite medicine for cats, we suggest doing plenty of research, weighing the pros and cons, and talking to your veterinarian.
In the meantime, we have also listed a few of the best ear mite medicine for cats below. Take a look.
Arava Natural Ear Mite Treatment For Dogs And Cats
A natural solution for the best ear mite medicine for cats is made by Arava. This product can help treat and alleviate pain and itchy ear mite infestations.
However, this ear mite solution should not be used for smaller cats under 13 pounds and it should not be used on puppies younger than nine months.
This product contains all-natural ingredients and dead sea minerals to help treat and alleviate ear mite infestations.
For the best results, apply up to three drops in each year. Use this method for at least 10 days to help kill all ear mites and alleviate painful infestations. You can also use this product with the below ear cleaning wipes we have listed in the prevention section of this article.
Four Paws Ear Mite Remedy
The Four Paws Ear Mite Medicine is another one of the best ear mite medicine for cats products we recommend because it is made with soothing aloe and other ingredients to help alleviate ear mite infestations.
The product kills ear mites on contact and helps soothe irritation, itching, and inflammation. We should note that this product is an insecticide ear mite treatment and should be used with caution. It contains the active ingredient pyrethrin, which is a common chemical insecticide known to target and kill mites and their larvae.
Keep it out of reach of children and pets and use it only as directed.
Adam’s Ear Mite Treatment
Adam’s Ear Mite Treatment is another product we recommend on our list of the best ear mite medicine for cats. It also contains pyrethrins and piperonyl butoxide as the two active ingredients, as well as other ingredients to help kill ear mites on contact and soothe inflamed and itchy ears including aloe vera.
The product comes in an easy-to-apply tube applicator and is designed to be used on cats that are 12 weeks or older. This treatment not only treats ear mites but also treats fleas and other topical pests that could attack your pet. As with most of the best ear mite medicine for cats, you can also use it on dogs.
Sentry Hc EarmiteFree Ear Miticide For Cats
A non-oily and water-based ear mite medication you might consider for your cats is the above Sentry Hc Earmitefree Ear Miticide for Cats. Like most of the best ear mite medicine for cats, Sentry Hc Miticide kills mites on contact, targeting adult mites and their larva.
This is a pesticide-based miticide product that contains pyrethrins as the active ingredient for ear mite removal.
As such, it should be used only as directed and kept out of reach of children and pets when not in use.
Miracle Care R-YM Ear Mite Treatment
Last but not least, we recommend this pyrethrin-based treatment for ear mites on cats and dogs. It also helps control spinose ear ticks. This product is safe to use on both dogs and cats
The product works using common insecticide ingredients like 15% pyrethrins, piperonyl butoxide, and more. It not only helps treat and kill ear mites on contact but it also helps soothe irritation caused by itching and inflammation.
Can Ear Mites Be Prevented With The Best Ear Mite Medicine For Cats?
Unfortunately, ear mite medicine for cats cannot prevent ear mites.
Unfortunately, it can be difficult to find the best ear mite medicine for cats for prevention purposes. The majority of ear mite medicine for cats available cannot penetrate the eggs and therefore only targets adult ear mites and their larva. This means that treatment can take a bit before it completely eliminates the ear mites and their young from your cat’s ears.
The best way to prevent ear mites in your cat is to ensure you are keeping up with routine vet visits, ensuring your cat’s environment is clean, and keeping an eye on your cat’s behaviors to determine if she is showing any early signs of an ear mite infestation.
While there is some controversy surrounding the use of natural preventatives for ear mites in cats, you can try using diluted oils that some people claim have the potential to repel ear mites.
However, keep in mind that some cats can be especially sensitive to certain oils, and using essential oils like tree oils could actually be harmful or painful for your cat.
Before using household ingredients or home remedies as the best ear mite medicine for cats, we encourage you to do plenty of research and to speak with your veterinarian.
You can also use common cat ear cleaning solutions on a routine basis to help repel ear mites and keep your cat’s ears healthy. While these cleaning solutions won’t treat ear mites and while they won’t prevent ear mites completely, they can help ensure your cat’s ears are not an ideal environment for cats.
Arava Pet Ear Cleaner Wipes
The above ear cleaning wipes provide an easy solution to keeping your cat’s ears clean. If you live in a multi-pet household, you can use these ear cleaning wipes to remove ear wax, debris, moisture, as well as build-up that could make your cat’s ears an ideal environment for ear mites.
The wipes can also help prevent yeast infections and irritation from ear mites, while even reducing odors.
You can order these wipes in a pack of 100, 200, or 300. The wipes are all-natural and made with chamomile, mallow, aloe vera, burdock, as well as vitamins E, D, B5, and more. They also contain dead sea minerals to help keep your cat’s ears healthy.
Virbac EPIOTIC Advanced Ear Cleanser
We also like the Virbac EPIOTIC Advanced Ear Cleanser above because it is vet recommended and comes with a non-irritating solution. It is ideal for cats with sensitive ears and is designed to help remove excess ear wax, moisture, and debris that could be attractive ear mites.
This product is also specifically recommended for pets who struggle with chronic ear mite infestations and cats who have red, itchy, or inflamed ears. It has a low pH balance as well and is designed not to interfere with the best ear mite medicine for cats.
DIY Methods For Ear Mites In Cats
Olive oil, mineral oil, and almond oil can help suffocate the ear mites without hurting them.
Treating your cat’s ear mites efficiently and with the best ear mite medicine for cats is important. However, if you’re in a bind there are some forms of home remedies you can use that many cat owners and experts claim work for treatment and prevention.
However, keep in mind that home remedies for the treatment of ear mites in cats can be controversial, and most home remedies are not proven to work scientifically.
Just as you would when using the above oils for the prevention of ear mites in cats, it is important to do your research and consult with your veterinarian about the best medicine for ear mites in cats before trying to self-treat your cat for ear mites at home.
With all that noted, let’s take a look at some home remedies you can do in place of the best ear mite medicine for cats.
Green Tea And Mineral Oil For Cleaning Your Cat’s Ears
Green tea is said to naturally cleanse the ear canal and remove waste and blood flecks left behind by the ear mites. To use this method for your cat, drop three to five drops of lukewarm green tea into your cat’s ear and then gently massage the base of the ear with your hand. You can use a cotton ball to dab the inside of the ear canal to dry it and clean out any debris.
Try Mineral Oils Or Olive Oil For Prevention and Treatment
Essential oils are commonly used to help repel and kill certain pests, but for cats, essential oils can be irritating and even dangerous. When it comes to home remedies and the best ear mite medicine for cats, we suggest using mineral oil, olive oil, or almond oil to kill the pests.
Simply add a few drops of the oil of your choice to your cat’s ear flaps and gently massage your cat’s ears. Any mites that come to the surface will be suffocated by the oils.
Garlic For Treatment Of Ear Mites In Cats
For a severe ear mite infestation in your cat, you can crush cloves of garlic and leave them to soak in the oil of your choice overnight. Garlic has healing properties and is known to be a natural killer of bacteria that could lead to ear infections in your cat.
Of course, before using the oil on your cat the next day it is important to strain the oil to remove all the bits of the crushed garlic.
Make Your Own Apple Cider Vinegar Ear Mite Treatment
Another method you can use for home remedies to treat ear mites in cats is to make an apple cider vinegar treatment.
Some veterinarians will even suggest owners use this method to help flush their cat’s ears before using the best ear mite medicine for cats.
To make this treatment, combine apple cider vinegar distilled water and use three to five drops to flush your cat’s ears. If you are not sure how to appropriately use this method safely to reduce the chances of ear infections, contact your veterinarian for precise instructions.
Vasaline For Ear Mites In Cats
Similar to using oils to smother ear mites in your cat’s ears, you can also use vaseline. Rub a bit of vaseline on the flaps of your cat’s ears and leave it so the ear mites will be suffocated by the substance. Avoid getting the vaseline into your cat’s ear canal, however, as this could cause further problems.
Yellow Dock Root For Treatment Of Ear Mites In Cats
Yellow dock root doesn’t necessarily help treat ear mites in cats, but it can help remove the brown crusty residue caused by the ear mite infestation. It can also help alleviate odor and offer some relief from itching.
To use this method, combine yellow dock root and water, and apply ½ a teaspoon per affected ear. Rub it into the ear and remove it with a cotton ball. This may be a two-person job, as it’s best not to allow your cat to shake her head during treatment.
Tips On Preventing Ear Mites In Cats And Keeping Your Cat Healthy
Preventing ear mites can be tricky, but ensuring your cat keeps up with routine vet visits can help.
Unfortunately, ear mites in cats are quite common. Whether your cat is an indoor or outdoor cat, ear mites are a threat and are responsible for 90% of mite infestations in pets.
Although it can be difficult to find a medication that specifically prevents ear mites in cats, there are some tips and tricks you can use to help keep ear mites and bay and ensure your cat is healthy.
Keep Your Cat’s Ears Clean BY Regularly Using An Ear Cleaning Solution
Cats can be susceptible to getting debris and moisture buildup in their ears that can lead to an ideal environment for ear mites. The best way to help prevent ear mites from infesting your cat’s ears is to keep your cat’s ears dry, clean, and healthy.
Routine cleaning of your cat’s ears can help ensure ear mites stay at bay, so we suggest using a solution recommended by your veterinarian or one of the ear cleaning solutions above we recommended earlier.
Keep Up With Routine Veterinary Visits
Like people, cats should be seen annually for routine checkups by their veterinarian. Not only can routine vet visits help ensure your cat is healthy, but they can also help ensure any potential early ear mite infestations are caught and treated early using the best ear mite medicine for cats.
Avoid Letting Your Cat Around Infected Pets Like Rabbits, Ferrets, Dogs, or Other Cats
If you know other pets in your area or home are infested with ear mites, keep your cat separated from their furry sibling or friend during treatment. Remember, ear mites are highly contagious and are not species-specific.
Ensure Your Cat’s Environment Is Clean
Although ear mites are generally passed from animal to animal, it is possible for ear mites to live outside of an ear canal for a short period of time. This means that cats can become infested from ear mites left behind on bedding, furniture, blankets, or even outside surfaces.
To reduce your cat’s chances of coming down with ear mites and needing to have the best ear mite medicine for cats, make sure you are washing bedding routinely and keeping your cat’s environment as clean as possible.
You might also consider using pest control products that can work both inside and outside of your home that contain pyrethrin to help kill any ear mites that could potentially be living on surfaces.
Treat Ear Mites As Soon As You Discover Them To Help Prevent A More Severe infestation
If you do believe your cat is suffering from an ear mite infestation, it’s important to get your cat treated as soon as possible.
Make sure you contact your veterinarian for advice on the best ear mite treatment for cats and be sure to do plenty of research before choosing to use natural remedies or insecticide medications for your cat.
We hope this has been a helpful guide to the best ear mite medicine for cats. Best of luck and thanks for reading!
Jack founded our blog after two decades of working in the pest control industry. His vast experience dealing with a wide array of pests allows him to diagnose issues quickly and get to the heart of pest problems quickly and effectively. He has serviced more than 2,000 homes over his career and there is hardly any pest situation that he has not seen before.