The bacterial and mycotic flora were assessed in 158 ears of dogs with otitis externa and in 101 ears of healthy control dogs. Pityrosporum pachydermatis occurred in 57 per cent of ears with otitis externa and in 17 per cent of clinically healthy ears. Staphylococci and Pseudomonas aeruginosa were the predominant bacteria in otitic ears, micrococci and Bacillus spp were the most frequent isolates from clinically healthy ears. P pachydermatis, Ps aeruginosa and Candida tropicalis occurred in monoculture in a significant number of mainly chronic cases of otitis externa. A combination preparation, containing miconazole, polymyzin B and prednisolone, was highly effective in controlling the clinical signs of otitis externa and eliminating flora from the affected ears. The data presented suggest that yeasts, and especially P pachydermatis, may be significant pathogens in otitis externa and that antimycotic treatment is an essential part of the treatment of otitis externa in dogs.
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