What You Need to Know About Hot Spots in Your Pet

Your pet may develop a hot spot due to excessive scratching, licking, and chewing caused by itchy skin. To alleviate your furry companion’s discomfort, it is important to educate yourself about these painful sores.

What are hot spots in pets?

Hot spots are a type of skin inflammation that can develop quickly in pets. They are also referred to as acute moist dermatitis or pyotraumatic dermatitis, and can be very painful and oozy for your pet. They seem to appear suddenly and can be quite uncomfortable.

What causes hot spots in pets?

Skin inflammation from environmental, flea, or food allergies is generally the cause of hot spots. But excessive licking, chewing, or scratching of an area leading to raw skin can also be a factor.

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?

To prevent a deep skin infection in your pet, it’s crucial to act quickly when you notice a small area of inflammation. You should put an Elizabethan collar (also known as an e-collar) on your pet right away to prevent them from further irritating the skin.

To treat your pet’s hot spot at our hospital, we may use sedation and a powerful pain reliever because hot spots are very painful. After making sure your pet is comfortable, we will remove tangled fur to expose the hot spot to the air. Wet and tangled fur can lead to infection, so it must be removed for the hot spot to heal.

We will use an antiseptic rinse to gently clean the affected area, flushing away any fur and debris. After the area is clean and dry, we’ll apply topical medications to soothe the itch and treat the infection. Our next steps will depend on the underlying cause of the hot spot. We might suggest allergy treatment, anal gland expression, ear medication, regular grooming, or other therapies.

If your pet’s skin has an inflamed area, please don’t hesitate to contact our team and schedule an appointment. This will help prevent a minor irritation from turning into a significant, painful hot spot.