Tools of the trade: Welch Allyn Otoscope 21700


Welch Allyn Otoscopeby Dr Caitlin Addison, Littlehampton Veterinary Clinic, SA

I use this instrument when a dog presents exhibiting trouble with its ears. It might be a noticeable ear discharge, suspected otitis externa, a foreign body in the ear or the dog might be simply repeatedly shaking its head. If there are any of these signs, then I use the Welch Allyn Otoscope to have a look down the ear canal.

What’s good about it

I like the no-nonsense aspect of this instrument—it’s simple to use, functional and can provide valuable information in diagnosing conditions of the external ear canal. Dogs are usually fine with the otoscope and tolerate it without a problem.

As well as checking for any discharge or inflammation of the ear canal, the otoscope is invaluable in the removal of grass seeds and foreign bodies. We have a special pair of tweezers that can be passed through the funnel of the eyepiece, making the whole process very easy.

What’s not so good

The main negative is that you have to position your head quite close to the animal, but that’s true of all otoscopes. The Welch Allyn Otoscope is a pretty hardy piece of equipment, although we have just broken one of its small magnifying lenses. Fortunately, the separate components of the instrument can be ordered from the supplier.

Where did you get it

Lyppard (


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