If your dog shaking his head, licking ears continuously, scratching ears, or discharging white (substance) from his ears then he probably suffering from a bacterial infection.

In that case, pet owners easily get worried about their furry pal health as untreated infectious disorders may cause some serious consequences, i.e. hearing disorders, tumors, etc.

If your pet is suffering from a bacterial infection of the ear, don’t be panic because in the following piece of the article I am going to share with you the best treatments (medicines) for ear infections in dogs.

What is Apoquel?

Apoquel contains the generic, “oclacitinib maleate” which is an immune system modulator drug and is used to relieve the symptoms of atopic dermatitis (eczema) in dogs, i.e. itching, irritations, redness, swelling or inflammation, rashes, etc.

It works on specific cytokines released by the defense system of a body in response to an allergen. So one thing is clear Apoquel medication does not treat bacterial infections (infectious disorders caused by bacteria) in dogs and is only suggested to relieve the symptoms of atopic dermatitis and other skin allergies.

Does Apoquel Use to Treat Ear Infections in Dogs?

The answer is quite simple:

Apoquel tablets do not treat ear infections in dogs. This medication is used to treat dog allergies and works by suppressing the immune system of the body.

The immune system is the defense system of a body that fights against harmful germs that may cause infections and provide protection.

Using Apoquel medication for treating bacterial infections may delay the healing process as it suppresses immunity and may increase the severity and symptoms of ear infections in dogs.

Hence, Apoquel (oclacitinib maleate) treatment is not recommended for dogs’ bacterial (ear) infections.

Apoquel for Chronic Ear Infections

As said before, Apoquel doesn’t treat bacterial, fungal, yeast (fungal), or any kinds of infectious disorders in dogs.

It’s recommended for skin allergy disorders and works by suppressing the immune system. Also, Apoquel medication is not recommended for puppies and dogs under one year old (as they have weak immunity).

Apoquel is a prescription drug that means it’s only available on a valid veterinarian prescription and you can’t buy it without a vet prescription.

Can Dog Allergies Cause Ear Infection?

The short answer is Yes. Your pet may have an ear infection because of an ear allergy. Let’s see how allergies cause infections in dogs?

Dog allergies don’t directly cause a bacterial/fungal infection but the symptoms and actions of germs provide a pleasant environment for bacteria to grow and over-replicate.

For instance, in the case of ear allergies in dogs. The most common symptoms are scratching, licking, shaking, etc. Persistent scratching develops wounds and provides space for bacterial growth. This kinda infection is called the secondary bacterial infection caused by a primary disease, i.e. allergic disorder.

Also if a dog is taking medication for allergies that could be steroids, antihistamines, or other immune system suppressant drugs. The chances of developing infections become very high in specific areas of the body.

Why a Suppressed Immune System Increases the Risks of Bacterial Infections in Dogs?

Have you heard the name ‘Commensals bacteria’? If not there is no problem because here I will share some interesting facts about these kinds of germs.

Commensals bacteria in dogs

These kinds of germs are present inside (urinary tract, digestive system, etc) and outside (skin surface) of a dog’s body without causing any harm or infections.

The immune system (defense system) of a dog’s body controls its growth and keeps them under control. Commensals bacteria of the digestive system helps digestion and support healthy gut flora.

If the immune system gets suppressed due to any reason (taking immune system suppressants or others). The replication of these good bacteria becomes uncontrol and the over-growth start which leads to an infection.

This infection cannot be treated with anti-viral, anti-fungal, or anti-allergy drugs like Apoquel (Oclacitinib maleate), Cytopoint (Lokivetmab), Benadryl (Diphenhydramine), etc.

Broad-spectrum antibiotics for dogs are used to treat these kinds of bacterial infections and work for a variety of gram-positive/gram-negative types of bacteria.

List of Effective Antibiotics for Ear Infection in Dogs


1. Simplicef

It contains the active ingredient, “Cefpodoxime Proxetil” which belongs to cephalosporins (a class of antibiotic drugs) and can be used for treating a broad range of soft tissues infection in canines, felines, and other animals.

2. Clavamox

This medicine contains two main ingredients, ‘amoxicillin trihydrate and Clavulanic acid’ which is a good combination of the penicillin-like drug (amoxicillin) and beta-lactam (clavulanate potassium). It can treat a variety of infectious diseases including ear infections in dogs.

3. Zeniquin

It contains the active ingredient, “marbofloxacin” which belongs to fluoroquinolones (a class of antibiotic drugs) and is used for the treatment of bacterial infections of canines. It’s the best antibiotic remedy for chronic ear infections in dogs.

Summary: Apoquel for Ear Infection in Dogs

Apoquel tablets are used for the treatment of allergic disorders in dogs as they can treat atopic dermatitis which causes skin irritations, rashes, swelling or inflammation on the skin, hair loss, etc.

It works by suppressing the immune system and increases the risks of infectious disorders. Hence, not recommended for bacterial infections in dogs. Antibiotics are used for the treatment of bacterial ear infections in dogs.

Doctor Xeeshan

Doctor Xeeshan

I am Doctor Xeeshan, located in Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan. In this blog, I am providing authentic information about dog breeds, diseases, medications, etc.


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