Hot Spots And How to Treat Them

Hot Spots

First let me say if you are the least bit unsure of what you are doing please conslut you local vet. Your dogs health is at stake !!!

When you think of hot spots you may think about the beach, mountains or other vacation destinations. For our beloved canine friends having hot spots is not a fun time.

Hot spots are inflamed, infected areas of skin that spread quickly due to licking and scratching. Redness, oozing, itchiness, and sometimes hair loss are all results of this condition. Some breeds are more prone to hot spots than others. This pesky problem generally occurs in the warmer months but it can spring up at any time.

What Causes Hot Spots? (acute moist dermatitis)

There is usually an underlying problem that causes the extreme scratching or licking behavior. Hot Spots are generally caused by external problems. An insect sting or bite, allergies, existing or change in diet or injury to the skin. Some dogs have been known to actually cause a hot spot due to stress-related problems or even boredom.

How to treat a Hot Spot

Trim the area around the hot spot a little beyond the outside perimeter with scissors. If the area is too big, you should shave it. Use utmost caution when trimming your pets fur. Remember this is a tender spot.

Clean the area by using a mild skin cleanser for dogs or a mild baby shampoo and rinse with cool water. Most important above all is to dry the area by gently patting it dry.

Apply hydrocortisone spray to stop the itching. Your Veterinary clinic should stock it and it is sold over the counter at most pet stores. Do not under any circumstance administer any medicine with out your veterinarians approval.

You must now prevent your dog from irritating the area by licking or scratching it. Place an Elizabethan collar (plastic cone) around your dog’s neck. It may be embarrassing to you and uncomfortable for your dog but it will keep him from biting and licking the effected area.

Above all you must keep the area clean and dry. Continue to treat the area as directed and make sure it continues to heal and doesn’t worsen or spread. Most hot spots when caught in the beginning stages can be cured quickly. If the hot spots continue to grow and get worse it
does require a visit to the vet. There’s always the possibility of a deeper skin infection.

Note: Although the internet is a great way to learn about you dogs health always consult your veterinarian when you are in doubt about your dogs wellbeing.