Does your dog suffer from skin irritations that make him constantly scratch, lick and chew at the infected area, resulting in skin inflammation or possibly even bleeding, pussy skin lesions?
This condition is known as moist dermatitis, or hot spots, and it often stems from an allergy that can result in very tender, painful skin lesions, which can flare up and spread quite quickly, causing inflammation, hair loss, and open lesions. Dog hot spots are generally deep pink or red areas of inflamed skin that feel warm and moist to the touch, and often secrete a pussy discharge if left untreated and infection is allowed to set in.
What Can Cause Dog Hot Spots
Hot spots in dogs are usually brought about due to an allergic reaction with some external stimulus. Grass seeds, pollen, and dust are all known to cause allergies in dogs with sensitive skins. Flea allergies are also very common, and once the dog starts scratching incessantly to alleviate his discomfort, the constant clawing at the skin can damage the tissue and allow infection to take a hold. A dog may sometimes come out in a clipper rash following grooming, especially if he has been shaved quite closely. The resulting discomfort may cause your pet to lick and chew at the area, resulting in further trauma being inflicted. Sometimes the allergy may be related to food intolerance, so if the symptoms persist you should consider changing your dog's diet to test whether the food you are feeding him may be causing the problem.
How to Treat Dog Hot Spots
Your primary objective will be to offer your dog some relief from the itching and pain to alleviate your pet's suffering. In order to achieve this, you will need to take the following steps:
- Trim excess hair away from the infected area, so that it can be cleaned and treated with ease.
- Wash the area with a medicated shampoo to kill any bacterial infection. Products containing Tea Tree extracts offer natural anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties, together with soothing agents to treat dog hot spots using natural remedies.
- Reduce the inflammation by applying a soothing agent such as HEALx Soother Spray to provide relief from pain, irritation and inflammation.
- Veterinary medication may be necessary. Antihistamines will help reduce the inflammation, and may be obtained in tablet form to administer orally, or as a hydrocortisone cream to be applied locally to the infected area. Antibiotics can also be administered orally, or an anti-bacterial cream may be applied to the affected area to combat bacterial infection.
How to Prevent Hot Spots in Dogs
In order to prevent hot spots from reoccurring, one needs to find out what is causing them in the first place. This can sometimes be quite tricky, but it may require simple observation, and following a process of elimination to rule out all possible causes. Once you have identified the culprit, you need to take action to eradicate it from your pet's environment, or minimize your pet's contact with, or access to areas where he is likely to become infected.