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Updated: June 21, 2017

If you gathered a room full of pet parents and asked how many of their fur babies have had skin issues, especially itching, I guarantee almost every single hand would go up.  Itching is common place in our pets, but it’s when that itch becomes excessive that you have a problem on your hands.

Canine atopic dermatitis is one of the leading causes of itching, and is caused by allergens in the environment, food or medication.  If your pup is diagnosed with this, your veterinarian may recommend corticosteroids, antihistamines or topical ointments.  Almost always, this is never a long term solution.  It behooves pet parents to get to the root cause of the allergy, however, testing for this can be pricey.

In our own lives, Angelo was first diagnosed with alopecia (hair loss), but then it quickly became apparent he had issues with dermatitis.  We were given three different things to battle it.  An antihistamine, a commercial dog food for allergies and animax ointment to put on the itchy areas.

Did any of them work?  Nope.  The antihistamine made Angelo constipated and too lethargic, we kept him on the commercial dog food diet for years (up until 2015) which seemed to make his itching worse and the animax ointment failed in every regard.

“We were prescribed this for a bacterial infection that caused my pet to scratch and bite himself incessantly. After 4 days use, we realized he was getting very hard of hearing, and after reading the package insert, we saw that hearing loss was a side effect. This is very distressing for our poor dog.” – A worried Pet Parent

For several years we were advised to keep on using the animax ointment, but were told to make sure that he doesn’t lick it (virtually impossible to prevent him from doing it) because it could cause diarrhea, excessive thirst and vomiting.  Not surprisingly, he did incur some of those issues.

What is Animax Ointment?

Animax oitnment is used to manage dermatologic disorders in dogs and cats.  It contains the following ingredients:

  • Nyastin: Is an anti-fungal used to combat yeast.  Negative effects include anorexia, vomiting, loss of appetite and diarrhea.
  • Neomycin & Thiostrepton: Are antibiotics.  Negative effects include facial swelling, intestinal problems, diarrhea and damage to both the ears and kidneys.
  • Triamcinolone: Is a corticosteroid.  Negative effects include hives, difficult breathing, weight gain, increased thirst, increased urination, diabetes, suppressed immune system and cushings syndrome.

Together these ingredients can be used to treat skin and ear disorders caused by allergies, bacterial or yeast infections.  Your veterinarian might also prescribe Animax when your pup gets infected cysts between the toes.  However, synergistically these same ingredients can also cause deafness in your dog.

I haven’t been able to find studies of how many dogs go deaf by using Animax, but there are anecdotal accounts here, here, here and here.  Allegedly, the deafness is temporary.  Even if that is true, would you really want to subject your dog to that?  What if you were deaf temporarily from a medication that you took, how would that impact you?  Quite severely I’m sure.

In all fairness there appears to be quite a few dogs who have benefited from using Animax ointment, but the chance still remains that your fur baby could be adversely affected by it.

With that said whenever introducing a new pharmaceutical or supplement to your fur baby, always be vigilant and proactive in your research.

Natural Alternatives

  • Turmeric/Coconut Oil: Mixed together these two powerful ingredients can help quell inflammation, treat fungal infections and heal bacterial infections.  I normally take a few table spoons of coconut oil and a teaspoon of turmeric and slightly heat it up in a small pot.  You don’t want to burn it, just wait until it sizzles.  After it cools, take a cotton ball and dab it in the solution.  Then you can gently wipe the problem areas on your pup.  I like to do this 2-3 times a day.  A bit of a warning, turmeric is orange and if your pup is allowed on your furniture or bedding, you’ll have some stains.  On the bright side, you’ll have a pup with nice healthy skin!
  • Witch Hazel/Baby Oil or Green Tea: Regular cleaning of your pups ears can help in preventing ear infections.  Thus eliminating the need for pharmaceuticals and medical ointments.  Once a week cleaning is ideal.  A couple drops of witch hazel and a drop of baby oil on a cotton ball will suffice for cleaning your pups ears.  Or you can heat up some green tea, let it cool, then dab a cotton ball in it and gently clean your fur babies ears.

If you have any other methods you use to clean your dogs ears or battle dermatitis, please comment below and don’t forget to share!  🙂

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9 thoughts on “Should You Use Animax Ointment For Your Dog? Probably Not, Unless You Want Them To Go Deaf.

  1. Our dog became deaf from Animax. It occurred this week so now we wait to see if he recovers.

        1. I”m so sorry Nancy. What did your vet say? Is there nothing that can be done?

          We are sending only good energy to your dog.

          Continue to keep us posted.

  2. I started using this brand in November both my pugs had three treatments want to Thanksgiving one at Christmas and then a follow-up after the Christmas holiday because I noticed something was severely wrong and followed that up with an appointment with a specialist. The short of the long my first pug lost his hearing Before Christmas and the day before his appointment my second pug lost his hearing. I contacted Animax directly and it wasn’t until I got on their website that their number one side effect is indeed deafness yet this is an ointment directed for use in the ears. I have had lengthy testing done including an endoscope they have no blockage infections or damage this brand ointment just causeed them both to go deaf!

    1. Amy,

      We’re so sorry this is happening to you. Have anyone of your pugs regained their hearing? At least a little of it?

      Sending only good energy to you and your little ones.

      1. Thank you for your thoughtfulness! One did briefly then returned to deaf. I mean brief… couple days but it does give me hope that maybe this will pass and they both get their hearing back. Very sad

  3. MY SERVICE DOG HAS JUST GONE DEAF!!!!! I feel as though this is all my fault. I usually do all natural with myself and animals and almost NEVER use pharmaceuticals (unless absolutely necessary). I took my service dog to the vet about 2 1/2 weeks ago because he kept shaking his and itching his ears. He gave me Animax in a squeeze bottle with JUST the directions to put some in each ear every day. No insert, not paperwork, just the meds. WHY I didn’t look it up on-line first like I normally do for my own meds, I don’t know why. Maybe because docs think I’m being “overly cautious” and one said that “I think too much…” Well, now they know why. I have a neurological disease that causes all kinds of issues, including agoraphobia. My service dog was/is the only way I’ve left my house. Now, he’s deaf!!! I don’t have $30,000 for a new dog, not even the $1500 to buy and train my own…..I’m desperately trying to save up to get running water in my home and now this? Is there ANY chance his hearing will come back?????

    1. My girl Devlin went dead due to animax and it did come back after approximately four months! She was already blind so we went through hell!!! My new vet just prescribed this for my boy and after 9 yrs I WILL NOT USE IT!!!

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