When we were at the vet a few weeks ago, she advised us to clean Asta's ears weekly. We bought the stuff that she advised, tried it, and Asta totally flipped out, was angry and nippy all night, absolutely miserable. The other day my husband noticed brown gook in her ears and we had to deal with it. She's our first dog, and given our first experience with ear drops, we called the local pet store. "Bring her in" they said. This morning I went in, the groomer did one ear, I did the other, and then she said "you don't need to pay me to clip her nails--I'll hold her and you clip and then you'll know how to do it". She also told me that once a week is probably too often to clean a puppy's ears, even a spaniel.
Never hurts to ask for help!