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How To Prevent Hot Spots in Pets

When their skin feels on fire from itching, your pet may scratch, lick, and chew so much that they create a hot spot. Help your furry pal beat the itch by learning more about these incredibly uncomfortable sores.

What are hot spots?

Acute moist dermatitis, also known as hot spots or pyotraumatic dermatitis, is a skin condition that causes inflamed sores to appear on a pet’s skin. These blotches frequently appear overnight and can develop quickly into an excruciating mess for your pet.

What causes hot spots in pets?

Hot spots are typically brought on by allergic reactions to food, fleas, or the environment. Nevertheless, anything that prompts your pet to lick, chew, or scratch an area until raw skin is exposed can be the cause.

Hot spots can be triggered by:

  • Ear infections
  • Skin infections
  • Matted fur
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Anal gland issues

How are hot spots in pets treated?

Treating your pet’s hot spots requires quick action to prevent a deep skin infection. As soon as you notice a small area of inflammation, you must put an Elizabethan collar (i.e., e-collar) on your pet to prevent them from further irritating the skin. 

As hot spots can be excruciatingly painful to the touch, we may give your pet sedation along with a potent analgesic when they come to our hospital for hot spot treatment. Once your pet is at ease, we will remove matted fur to make room for air. To enable the hot spot to heal, the wet, matted fur must be removed because it acts as a breeding ground for infection.

To remove fur and other debris, we will gently clean the area with an antiseptic rinse. Then, to relieve the itch and treat the infection, we will apply topical medications to the clean, dry skin. We may suggest allergy treatment, anal gland expression, ear medication, routine grooming, or other therapies depending on the underlying cause of the hot spot.

If you notice an irritated, inflamed area on your pet’s skin, don’t wait. Give our team a call to schedule an appointment before a minor irritation flares into a large, painful hot spot.