Hot Spots in Dogs

hot spots in dogs

A hot spot is an itchy, irritated skin lesion that commonly appears across the dog’s shoulders and neck. Hot spots are also known as pyotraumatic dermatitis. In a small percentage of cases, this condition causes secondary bacterial infection. Due to the lymphatic drainage that passes through these areas, there is often edema surrounding the affected area. Hot spots occur in dogs with allergies or other medical issues like hypothyroidism, but allergies are the most common cause of hot spots in dogs.

Cause of Hot Spots in Dogs

The cause of hot spots in dogs is usually infection caused by bacteria or yeast in the skin and hair follicles. Dogs with chronic allergies may also develop hot spots.

The most common bacteria found in hot spots are Staphylococcus intermedius and Streptococcus spp., which live on the skin’s surface without causing any problems. However, if your dog scratches at the affected area or rubs against something rough, such as grass or rocks, bacteria can enter the wound and start to grow within it. This infection causes inflammation and then pus forms within the wound along with hair loss due to constant scratching.

The most common yeast found on human skin is Malassezia pachydermatis (formerly Pityrosporum orbiculare). This fungus lives on healthy dogs’ skin but does not typically cause any problems unless it becomes overgrown or irritated by something else such as parasites or allergies.

Hot Spots in Dogs with Thick Fur

Hot spots are often seen in dogs with thick coats that have been exposed to hot weather. Extra-long hair can also be an issue because it is more prone to matting and tangling when the dog is scratching or chewing on it. Your veterinarian may recommend a medicated shampoo that contains benzoyl peroxide or chlorhexidine gluconate, which helps disinfect the area and promotes healing.

The Initial Irritation

If your dog has a hot spot, it’s because an initial irritation — like an insect bite — has caused your dog to pick at and chew the irritated area. This can result in redness, pain, and inflammation of the skin. A lesion may appear in just a few hours and can expand rapidly over just a few days.

hot spots in dogs

Excessive Chewing in Dogs with Hot Spots

Dogs are pretty simple creatures. They can’t speak, they don’t understand our words and they need to communicate any pain they might be experiencing in other ways. Unfortunately, these sorts of methods are often misunderstood by us humans!

One way that your pup might be trying to tell you that something hurts is by licking or chewing at their skin until it’s raw. In some cases, this is simply because dogs will lick things in order to clean themselves (or because the smell makes them hungry). However, if your dog keeps licking his or her paws even when there isn’t anything on them then there’s a good chance he or she may be trying to relieve some sort of discomfort without being able to say what’s bothering him/her.

And while it may seem counterintuitive that this type of behavior would cause more damage than good (and thus make whatever was causing pain worse), remember: dogs can’t speak! They will address the damage as they see fit. They depend on you to make sure they’re happy, healthy, and safe.

Worsened Hot Spots in Dogs

If you have a dog with hot spots, you may be wondering what causes them. Hot spots are areas of the skin that become inflamed and sore, causing your dog to lick at them incessantly. Dogs can develop hot spots due to a variety of reasons including allergies, fleas, or poor grooming practices.

Hot spots can be painful for your dog and if left untreated they can cause hair loss and skin damage. In addition to being uncomfortable for your pup, these sores may also smell bad as bacteria gets trapped beneath the surface of his skin which makes matters worse by attracting flies that sit on top of his wounds which then bite him as well!

If you notice any changes in your dog’s behavior or appearance such as excessive licking around one area on their body or if he spends more time sitting than usual with any part of his body facing upwards (like how we humans would sit when watching TV) it could mean there’s something wrong so make sure you check out these symptoms ASAP before it becomes an even bigger problem!

Lesions from Hot Spots in Dogs Spread Quickly

It can happen quickly and without warning. One moment, you’re walking your dog, and the next minute he’s rolling around on the floor of your living room, tearing at his coat with biting intensity and making strange noises. Promptly remove him from this location—hot spots can spread rapidly to other parts of the body or even to other dogs if they come in close contact with each other. You’ll also want to keep your pup away from small children who might accidentally kick or step on him while he’s flopping around on the carpet.

The longer a hot spot is left untreated, the more likely it is that it will become infected. If you do notice any signs of infection—such as redness spreading across more than half of an affected area—you should get veterinary attention right away before things get worse!

Treat Hot Spots in Dogs ASAP

Hot spots are best treated by a veterinarian, who will prescribe an antibiotic and anti-inflammatory medication. Your vet may also recommend clipping away the damaged hair and treating the area with antiseptics to prevent infection from spreading further.

While you wait for the vet visit, here are some tips for treating hot spots:

  • Clean the area thoroughly with soap and water. Use a cotton swab dipped in hydrogen peroxide or an antibacterial wash to clean out any dirt in the area before applying any medications.
  • Apply an antiseptic spray or hemp salve to help prevent infection, such as Neosporin or triple antibiotic ointment. Gently apply this medication to the affected area twice daily for two weeks after the hot spot has healed up completely
  • Apply calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream to help soothe pain and inflammation at least once daily for two weeks

CBD for Hot Spots in Dogs

CBD is a non-psychoactive cannabis compound that is extracted from the hemp plant. It has been proven to be effective in treating many ailments including hot spots in dogs. Dogs are very sensitive animals and they love to lick their wounds. This can lead to infections and other health issues if not treated properly.

CBD oil is one of the most effective natural treatments for hot spots in dogs because it reduces inflammation and pain while increasing blood circulation to the affected area, promoting faster healing time.

terpenes list

Avoid Triggers

If your dog has an allergy-related hot spot then it’s important to look at their diet and lifestyle so that you can eliminate any potential irritants from their life. For example, if they seem fine when they’re indoors but develop an itchy rash when they go outside then this could be due to something in their environment such as pollen or dust mites which isn’t present inside your home. You may need to take extra steps to reduce exposure to these irritants such as keeping pets inside during peak pollen times or using air purifiers in your home during those months as well.

Read more:

How to Treat and Prevent Hot Spots on Dogs – American Kennel Club

Hot Spots in Dogs | VCA Animal Hospital

Hot spots | Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine

Antioxidative and Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Cannabidiol – PMC

The Effects of Cannabinoids on Pro- and Anti-Inflammatory Cytokines: A Systematic Review of In Vivo Studies




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  1. Pingback: Alternatives to Benadryl for Dogs – Drake Dog Cancer Foundation

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