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Otitis externa of dogs is a multifactorial aetiology disease, caused by a wide range of bacteria, parasites and fungi (Kiss and others, 1997). Out of these, species and subspecies of the genus Staphylococcus are recognised as important bacteria of the mucous membranes and natural micro flora of the skin including external ear (Cole and others, 1998, Zamankhan-Malayeri and others, 2010). Members of this genus are classified as coagulase-positive (CoPS) and coagulase-negative staphylococci (CoNS), and have been frequently reported as causative agents of the numerous infections in animal and human populations, worldwide (Malik and others, 2005).
In veterinary clinical practice, the treatment of dog otitis with infectious origin remain one of the most challenging problems, taking into account the rapid development of antibiotic resistance of bacterial strains associated with frequent usage of prolonged antibiotic treatments (Tejedor and Martin, 2002, Penna and others, 2010). Moreover, the application of empirical systemic or topical treatments by the small animal practitioners, without antimicrobial sensitivity testing, can contribute greatly to undesirable outcomes in a disease control. Therefore, the frequent updating of the sensitivity charts of bacterial strains with zoonotic potential isolated from pets should be one of the most important concerns of clinicians in the treatment of infectious disorders (Lilenbaum and others, 2000).
In Romania, the antibiotic susceptibility testing of the bacterial strains isolated from external otitis of dogs was focused on Staphylococcus genus and was carried out especially in veterinary teaching units in the last decade (Dégi, 2005, Niculae and others, 2009). Thus, the current study was undertaken to investigate the occurrence of staphylococcal flora in canine patients suffering from otitis externa, and to provide new data about their antibiotic resistance.
From October 2010 to January 2011, 58 dogs with characteristic clinical signs of otitis externa (eg, pruritus, local pain, otorrhoea, desquamation of the ear …