How to Treat Hot Spots on Dogs

What are Hot Spots

Hot spots are skin irritations and can take on various forms.  They may appear to bald spots at first and can then worsen to open sores that are painful.   Hot spots can spread very fast so be sure to treat them as soon as you suspect your dog has them.  One last note:  if you notice tiny mites on your dog’s skin or hair follicles then your do has mange not hot spots.  The good news is that mange is also treatable.

Hot spots are actually a form of dermatitis called acute moist dermatitis and are a bacterial skin infection.  At first you may notice your dog scratching a localized area on his body.  You may notice balding or a small red area that looks like a bite.  This is the beginnings of a dog hot spot. 

How do dogs get hot spots?

Hot spots can form many ways.  Many times your dog is licking or scratching himself because of a some issue causing a bacterial infection leading to hot spots.  Some of the common cause that will cause a dog to scratch include:

  1. Skin allergies caused by a weak immune system.  This is very common in many breeds of dog and treated with digestive enzymes to rebuild your dog’s immune system.
  2. Flea or tick bites
  3. Infections on the skin
  4. Anal sac discharge
  5. Dirty or matted coat
  6. Stress or loneliness

As you can see many of these causes tat can be cured with an effective dog hot spot treatment option.  Others such as stress require more interaction and exercise for your dog or you will continue to notice skin problems. If left untreated it will worsen to an open sore and spread quickly so it is best to find a dog hot spot treatment once you notice a problem on your dog.

Symptoms of Hot Spots on Dogs

As mentioned earlier skin problems on dogs can be many things and how to treat hot spots on dogs can be confusing without understanding what the cause is.   It is best to make a visit to your veterinarian to determine the exact issue.  Some things you can look for as an owner are localized red spots that grow fairly quickly.  Hair loss and open sore may also develop. 

Breeds with thicker coats and prone to shedding are more susceptible to hot spots.  Also, outside dogs or dog’s that swim often are also more prone.

How to Dog Treat Hot Spots

Treating hot spots is often a to step process:

Step 1:

You want to clean the infected area well.  This may require removing matted hair or dried dead skin.  Use an mild antispectic solution to gently clean the isolated area.  Chlorhexidine and Neosporin are good choices.  Do not use hydrogen peroxide as it is a bit too strong and can cause other skin damage.   Once the localized area is clean you’ll want to a dog shampoo meant as a dog hot spot treatment  shampoo to kill bacteria that may have spread to other parts of your dog.  This step is particularly important as bacterial infections spread quickly on dogs.  RenuPlex Medicated Dog Shampoo is our all natural shampoo that is very effective at treating hot spots.

Step 2:  The 2nd step is to treat the root cause of the skin problem.  If it is not stress or loneliness we suggest introducing a Digestive Enzyme into your dogs diet to help improve their immune system.  When a dog has a weak immune system the first place it shows is on their skin.  Our Dog Digestive Enzyme SkinPlex PLUS is a great supplement that has been available for over 15-years and used may many per owners successfully.

We hope this information is useful on how to treat hot spots on dogs.   Please send us a note with any questions you may have.