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 2. Alpaca Healthcare & Nutrition
 ear infection
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151 Posts

Posted - 09/23/2009 :  07:25:41 AM  Show Profile  Visit breezyridge's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I have an alpaca which suddenly got an ear infection. I have been hearing about the spinose ticks and feared it was that causing the infection. The vet didn't detect any ticks in either ear but did see infection in the one which she held down. I hear these ticks can be hidden and can't be seen with the otiscope. She is on antibiotics shots and antibiotic ear drops. Do these alpacas just get ear infections for no apparant reason? This is a first for me.

If it was caused by ticks, I hear you can use frontline spray to prevent. How would you use this spray? In the ears or around the outer ear?

I also hear that ear infections can be fatal if not caught in time. This is my special girl which had a very tought start of life.

Breezy Ridge Alpacas LLC
Perryville, MO.


936 Posts

Posted - 09/23/2009 :  10:48:20 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
You'd spray Frontline in each ear every month to prevent the ticks.

Hope your alpaca is feeling better.


Dani McKenzie
Longbottom Meadows
Roy, WA
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151 Posts

Posted - 09/24/2009 :  06:21:51 AM  Show Profile  Visit breezyridge's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Thanks, She is much better, the ear is standing up again.
We have discussed the frontline with others and no one seemed to know just how much and if sprayed directly in the ear. You would think that moisture would not be good in the ears. Do you just do one spray?

Breezy Ridge Alpacas LLC
Perryville, MO.
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1291 Posts

Posted - 09/24/2009 :  06:58:36 AM  Show Profile  Visit highpeaksalpacas's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Glad she is already feeling better...make sure you follow the antibiotics/drops through the whole course prescribed by your vet..ear infections can be fatal ..glad you caught it and she is responding so quickly! That's good news!

High Peaks Alpacas
Wilmington, NY

You only live with alpacas!
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3 Posts

Posted - 09/24/2009 :  09:40:32 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks for sharing your experience. We have had some recent cases and have started using an aersol tick spray in the ears as a prevention. It's been suggested to use every 10-14 days. No more problems, holding our breaths! Sounds like you caught your girl in time, please keep us posted.
Lindy Huber, Seldom Scene Farm
Frankfort, KY
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151 Posts

Posted - 09/24/2009 :  10:05:01 AM  Show Profile  Visit breezyridge's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Is the aerosol that you are talking about called Catron? I had purchased some a week ago to have on hand after hearing of others with ear ticks. So I did use in her ear as soon as I noticed it was droppy, just to cover that aspect. Vet did not detect any ticks but could not look deep into the canal.
I think what has helped to heal the ear so quickly is we got her to the Vet ASAP and started baytril ear drops and naxcel injections. I am told that pen G just isn't strong enough to get to the infection quick enough. We are supplementing with probiotics also. She is holding both ears up today!

By the way, my Vet said her ear looked redish and like it was scraped, we suspected the catron did this. NOt so sure I want to use that regularly, only as needed that is why I asked about using frontline. If no one else comes down with ticks or ear infection, I am going to presume it was not do to ticks and a ear infection of no known cause.
Thanks for responses.

Breezy Ridge Alpacas LLC
Perryville, MO.
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208 Posts

Posted - 09/25/2009 :  01:20:00 AM  Show Profile  Visit samsuri's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi there

I've never used Frontline on an alpaca, but have used dog tick collars with the ingredient Amitraz... apparently you can also get this as a spray.

We don't get this tick in Australia, but we have others that cause paralysis and death.. The Amitraz has been effective in keeping them off the alpacas.


Robyn Harrison
Samsuri Alpacas
Coloured Suri Alpacas
Gympie, Queensland, Australia
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151 Posts

Posted - 10/01/2009 :  06:54:51 AM  Show Profile  Visit breezyridge's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Update on my girl with ear infection. We did the course of antibiotics which was naxcel and baytril ear drops. The naxcel was 6 days at 2x day. Well after 3 days off the naxcel the ear dropped again and we got her to the Vet right away. Vet noticed a hole in eardrum and infection still there. We are now on naxcel 2xday for up to 3 weeks. 3 bottles worth of the drug at 1.5cc per dose (2.5cc for first 2 doses) for 123lb alpaca. Needless to say I am very worried about this girl. Vet seen no signs of ticks and no determination of cause of infection.
I guess I need reassurance that this is the proper treatment & dosage so that my girl will get better.

Breezy Ridge Alpacas LLC
Perryville, MO.
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Mary Jane

1152 Posts

Posted - 10/01/2009 :  07:11:07 AM  Show Profile  Visit Mary Jane's Homepage  Reply with Quote
While at Ohio State on another matter, I asked Dr. Anderson about an older female who had recurring ear infections. Dr. Anderson said that sometimes a tooth problem will cause ear infections because of the close proximity of the ear canal and the tooth roots.

Mary Jane

Land of Legends Alpacas
2653 Swans Road
Newark, OH 43055
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701 Posts

Posted - 10/01/2009 :  08:08:20 AM  Show Profile  Visit vintagealpacas's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Why don't you switch to a more effective antibiotic? There are antibiotics that can be given like once every 4 days... forgot the name but I am sure others know it. It is pricey - but worth the effort and results from what others have told me.

Kim Rassi

Kimberly Rassi
Vintage Alpacas
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270 Posts

Posted - 10/01/2009 :  09:09:34 AM  Show Profile  Visit redroofranch's Homepage  Reply with Quote

We just finished dealing with a nasty ear infection on a yearling boy. Originally, the vet had prescribed Naxcel 2cc on day one, then 1 cc per day for 10 days. He did not clear up in that time, so we left him on the Naxcel for 3 weeks. We also flushed the ear twice a day with Nolvasan (very diluted). He's been clear for a couple of weeks and doing fine now. We weren't sure he was going to make it there for a while. I'd say stay with the antibiotics. They just don't seem to clear up quickly once they're infected like that.

Good Luck with her.


Kathy & Rick Tinkham
Red Roof Ranch Alpacas
Cadiz, KY

(270) 522-0379

"We create our tomorrows by what we dream today."
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151 Posts

Posted - 10/01/2009 :  11:39:13 AM  Show Profile  Visit breezyridge's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I would switch antibiotics if the Dr. recommended it. But seeing how the naxcel worked at first, we just quit too soon. I am sure the Vet feels that it will work if on it long enough. Worried about doing the ear wash though. Not so sure that is a good thing with an open eardrum. Vet wants us to wash the ear every other day with TrizEDTA. We had used baytril ear drops for 10 days prior to this. She eats, and weight is steady and is already perking her ear up today. Seems the antibiotic is a good choice, just such a long duration.

Her teeth seem fine and eats normally but a good idea to watch for tooth problems as cause of this. Thanks for that tip.

Breezy Ridge Alpacas LLC
Perryville, MO.
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77 Posts

Posted - 10/02/2009 :  12:37:18 AM  Show Profile  Visit alpacasofeldorado's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Over the years we have delt with ticks and ear infections. Ivermectin used directly in the ear will kill the ticks. You can dilute it with mineral oil and use a 1cc syringe in each ear. We also had a nasty ear infection that would not go away after using 10 days of Baytril injections and Naxcell injections. Our vet suggested we try putting the Naxcell directly into the ear canal. We did it and it cleared the infection right up.

Laurie Findlay
Alpacas of El Dorado
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