There are several types of mites that can invade the ear canals of dogs, puppies, cats, and kittens. The same mite can affect both dogs and cats. In the puppy and kitten, the most common ear mite is Otodectes cynotis. It is not important in the diagnosis and treatment of ear mites to identify the exact scientific type of mite. Regardless of the exact mite species involved, we usually refer to mites of the ear canal simply as ear mites. Contrary to popular belief, however, is the fact that ear mites can live anywhere on the animal's body.
Puppies and kittens with ear mites will scratch around their ears and/or shake their heads. The amount of scratching and shaking depends on the severity of the mite infestation. With more advanced infestation, the ear canals will bleed and either fresh or dried blood will appear inside the canal. Dried blood resembles coffee grounds. If you peer into your pet's ears and notice a build-up of a material that looks like 'coffee grounds,' then your pet probably has ear mites, although a bacterial and/or yeast infection is also a possibility. Ear mites are very common, but still serious. Left untreated, they severely damage the ear canals and eardrum and can cause permanent hearing loss. If mites spread out of the ears to other areas of the body, the animal may or may not scratch the area