A new subspecies, Staphylococcus schleiferi subsp. coagulans, was isolated from the external auditory meatus of dogs suffering from external ear otitis and is described on the basis of studies of 21 strains. Phenotypic studies showed that these strains are more closely related to Staphylococcus intermedius than to other staphylococci, but DNA hybridization studies indicated that they are closely related to Staphylococcus schleiferi N850274T. On the basis of biochemical distinctiveness (positive test tube coagulase test and different carbohydrate reactions) and the etiological importance (frequent isolation from otitis specimens from dogs) of these strains, we propose to classify them as a subspecies of S. schleiferi. The strains of this new subspecies are coagulase tube test, beta-hemolysin, and heat-stable nuclease positive but clumping factor negative. A simple scheme for the differentiation of S. schleiferi subsp. coagulans from the other coagulase-positive staphylococci is presented. The type strain is GA211 (= JCM 7470).