Hot Spots on Dogs: Symptoms, Treatment & Prevention
What Are Hot Spots?
Canine hot spots are lesions that occur when dogs scratch, gnaw and/or lick at an itchy area on their bodies. These sores are red, wet, and often warm to the touch (hence the name “hot spots”). They are commonly accompanied by areas of matted fur and/or hair loss. Hot spots often become infected, and the resulting discomfort will cause the dog to do further damage to the area with continued scratching, gnawing, and/or licking. Your vet may refer to this condition as acute pyoderma, acute moist pyotraumatic dermatitis (AMPD), or moist/wet eczema.
Treatment for Hot Spots
The first course of action for a dog with hot spots is to clear the bacterial infection and cleanse the wound. The first step is to irrigate the wound with lots of fresh water (tap water is fine) to clear out as much dirt and bacteria as you can. Then you can use a topical ointment like Calendula (when possible) to treat the bacterial infection. Please be sure to avoid using anything that would irritate the wound (like anything with alcohol), as the pain and irritation could prompt the dog to do further damage. It's best to avoid antibiotic ointments on areas that can be licked, as your dog will likely ingest these.
It is recommended to use the "cone of shame" to prevent your pet from agitating the hot spot. Keeping the area clean and dry is the best way to promote healing and to prevent reoccurrence of hot spots. Some experts recommend that you carefully clip and remove any matted hair within the hot spot to help it dry out; however, that approach comes with a high risk of skin injury to the dog (and getting bitten!)
How To Prevent Hot Spots
The second course of action is to identify and remove the root cause of the itch. Hot spots are commonly caused by allergies, such as allergies to tree pollen, grass, insect bites, or food allergies, among others. Springtime has several products that are effective in combating allergies, such as Longevity™ (ideal for dogs who get wet food) and Fresh Factors™ chewables (ideal for dogs who eat kibble). Allergies to flea bites are a very common source of hot spot allergies. Bug Off Garlic is the natural way to protect your dog from fleas without resorting to dangerous topical chemicals.
Although allergies are commonly the cause of hot spots, some dogs get them for reasons other than allergies, such as dry skin. If your dog needs a dry skin remedy, Springtime offers Skin & Coat Oil and Omega 3-6-9™ softgels. You might want to have your dog tested for allergies; however, some dog owners find that the information you get from such tests is not worth the time or expense.
Below you can find more information on remedies for hot spots:
Longevity™ is a powerful supplement blend, including chondroitin, MSM, glucosamine HCl, spirulina, and bee pollen, in a powder formula, to support multiple health functions. Many customers whose dogs had developed yeasty ear issues also reported excellent results.
If you were concerned about using a powder like Longevity, you could instead use Fresh Factors™, which contains natural ingredients, including chondroitin sulfate, bee pollen, yeast culture, kelp, biotin, and beef liver to supports healthy joints, coat, and digestion. The chewables are very easy to break, and you can just toss them into your dog’s food.
Many dogs are allergic to the saliva from fleas, ticks, and other biting insects. Protect your dog by using Bug Off Garlic, a safe and effective 24-hour shield against fleas, ticks, flies, mosquitoes, etc. Bug Off Garlic is flavored with real beef liver. Springtime offers Bug Off Garlic in granule form or easy-feeding tablets, which are great for kibble diets.
Skin & Coat is a blend of seven of the most nutrient-dense oils available. This formula will produce a soft, brilliant, weatherproof coat and healthy, itch-free skin.
Omega fatty acids are important building blocks for healthy skin and coat. Springtime's Omega 3-6-9™ contains distilled wild fish oil with full-spectrum essential fatty acids for a shiny coat and healthy skin.
What Our Customers Say About Springtime Treatments for Hot Spots...
Don't just take our word for it! Read what our customers have to say about their own hot spot relief experiences with
Springtime Longevity™, Fresh Factors™, Bug Off Garlic Chewables, Bug Off Garlic Granules, and Omega 3-6-9™.
"...whenever anyone says 'hot spots,' I say 'Fresh Factors'..."
I just gave your info to my neighbors here in Plymouth/Manomet, Massachusetts. Their Collie, Duncan, has hot spots for the first time this summer. I originally found you many years ago via my daughter, Jenifer, of The Pawsitive Dog in Boston. At the time, my Golden had terrible and recurrent hot spots. She suggested I try Fresh Factors. They helped him immensely. Since then, whenever anyone says "hot spots," I say "Fresh Factors" and pass along your catalog or web address.
Kathleen Vickery, Massachusetts