Hot spots, known by your veterinarian as “moist dermatitis”, are patches of skin with bacterial infections. They appear as red damaged skin and sometimes oozing patches of skin either exposed from licking or tucked under the fur. Immediate dog hot spot treatment is important for your pup's overall health.
They are generally caused by a combination of two factors: a break in the skin and moist conditions. Trauma to the skin can be caused for any number of reasons including an injury, scratching from allergies, or even an insect bite. When moist conditions such as a bath, a swim, or persistent licking occur, conditions become ripe for bacteria to establish themselves, leading to an infection at the site.
While prevention measures such as helping your pooch get dry after a swim and grooming to avoid mats in the fur can help, these “Summer Sores” are often a repeating warm weather occurrence from dogs that suffer from them.
This article will give you some information on when to see your vet and some strategies for treating hot spots on dogs at home with natural products.
How to Spot Hot Spots on Dogs
Hot spots can look very different depending on the breed of dog, length of fur, and stage of advancement. If left untreated, hot spots often get larger, more inflamed, and can become extremely irritating for your pooch.
If you have a dog with a medium to long coat, you may not notice the visual signs of a hot spot right away because it is under the fur (sometimes matted fur). Keep a close eye on your dog for signs of excessive licking or scratching in a specific area and monitor the skin under the fur in the affected area for signs that a hot spot may be developing. You might notice hair loss from excessive licking.
Acute Moist Dermatitis: Should I See My Vet?
Yes, particularly if you are dealing with treating hot spots on dogs for the first time. One thing to keep in mind is that hot spots can spread alarmingly fast and they often require medical treatment to rapidly kill the bacteria and promote healing. For example, your vet may recommend a hot spot spray to kill bacteria, relieve itching, and help keep the area dry.
In addition, hot spots, particularly chronic ones, can be signs that deeper and potentially more serious problems need to be addressed. Work with your vet to make sure the problem is not being caused or exacerbated by diet, underlying immune dysfunction, or food allergies.
Natural Remedies for Hot Spots on Dogs
If you have worked with your vet to make sure there are no underlying issues and you’re still left with a dog that gets a mild hot spot a few times a year, then you’re in luck. Mild cases can often be treated from home.
Here are some ways to identify and treat hot spots from home:
- Keep a close eye on excessive scratching or itching to catch developing hot spots as fast as possible.
- If you spot one in the early stage, carefully trim the fur around the area to help it stay dry and promote healing.
- Wash the area very gently a few times a day using a mild detergent (plain blue Dawn works) or an antibacterial soap specially formulated for dogs. Rinse with a clean cloth and pat dry thoroughly.
- Applying a cool compress to the area several times a day can help reduce the inflammation and give your pet some relief. Just be sure that the area gets dry after applying any cold therapy.
- Prevent your dog from licking the area using a special collar for that purpose if necessary.
- Contact your veterinarian immediately if the sore does not begin to dry up and resolve within 48 hours, or if it begins to spread or worsen in intensity. They have the most effective knowledge on how to treat dog hot spots.
By helping to soothe itchy skin and boost skin health, a CBD balm made from full-spectrum hemp oil can promote the healing of dry areas. In turn, this can help prevent your canine companion from damaging the area with excessive itching or licking which can be a major cause of hot spots in many dogs.
If you have a dog that is prone to hot spots, work with your veterinarian to see where CBD may fit in as part of an overall focus on skin health.
Where Can I Find High-Quality CBD Oil for My Dog?
It is important to find a CBD oil such as Lolahemp that’s made from organic hemp and formulated specifically for our pets.
CBD oil is currently experiencing a massive boom. It’s in demand thanks to a proliferation in scientific research demonstrating a host of potential therapeutic benefits and the discovery of the body’s endocannabinoid system and its many regulatory functions. Since demand is high, there are plenty of companies selling products made from low-quality ingredients or containing less CBD than advertised. In some cases, none at all!
Here at Lolahemp, we provide third-party lab testing for our products so that you can verify the quality before you buy. We were inspired to make the highest quality CBD Oil for dogs by our own loving dog, Lola. And, we donate a portion of proceeds to local shelters and rescues through our community giveback program.