Hot spots are itchy spots, terribly itchy spots, that drive your pet crazy, until they become painful. They are skin sores you don't want any of your pets to have to experience.
They can start as bug bites, skin allergies, poor grooming, or irritations from an injury or previous infection. (Yes, hot spots can develop from poor grooming - tangled or matted fur can give rise to a skin infection that can develop into a hot spot.)
But because a hot spot can appear 'out of the blue,' or at least it seems that way, you should have one or two treatments (e.g., a shampoo and a spray treatment) available at home all the time.
... These products are also used to treat original injuries, such as insect bites, skin scrapes, or allergies, before they become hot spots, so you should have them on hand. For example, I use two of the treatments below for seasonal allergies (Moosh Natural Dog Shampoo) and ear infections. (Stat! Spray).
Let's start with a special hot spot shampoo....
I'm really excited about Moosh Dog Shampoo to alleviate itching. I use it for my dog who has severe seasonal allergies, and it seems to dull his inclination to scratch a lot. It's just a great shampoo to use on a regular basis if your dog has dry, itchy, or sensitive skin, and it leaves his fur very soft. It has all natural ingredients - bentonite clay, argon oil, and neem oil - that interact to just lift those bacteria and fungi right off the skin so they can be rinsed off.
If and when you need to use the products listed below, you should continue to use Moosh or another allergy shampoo for dogs. I don't advocate using the shampoos with tea tree oil, as some dogs don't react well to them.
Before using the products below, remove your dog's fur from the irritated skin area. Shave the fur from the area so that you can fully cover the area affected by wound with the treatment solution. You can use these products on dogs, cats, horses, rabbits, and rodent pets.
Vetericyn has a popular line of skin treatments and Vetericyn Plus is no exception. It's an excellent topical cleanser and contains no harmful chemicals for your pet to ingest; the active ingredient in the formula is hypochlorous acid. Vetericyn Plus Wound & Skin Care is intended to maintain the cleanliness of your dog's wound. It may also reduce redness, swelling, and itching. If it does not, you may want to try one of the other treatments below.
Stat! Spray is a convenient multi-purpose antiseptic spray. It has an ingredient called hydrogel, a gel with a fluid concentration of Benzalkonium chloride. Hydrogel enables the spray to lubricate the wound, so it is an efficient carrier. I use Stat! and I am impressed with it. It can be applied to almost any wound, in fact, all but deep wounds (which should be seen by your vet!). I have applied it to itchy spots behind my dog's ears and even in his ears to relieve yeast infections. It's something you want to keep around for dog, cat, horse, and farm animal emergencies, because Stat! has so many uses - yes, including hot spots!
This hot spot treatment also has a variety of uses as you can see in the image above. The ingredients, all organic, include Aloe Vera, Manuka Honey, Coconut, Olive and Hemp Seed Oils, Shea Butter, Blue Green Algae for Minerals, with Vitamins A, B, C, E and Amino Acids. It rubs on as a cream and absorbs quickly. ResQ Organics Pet Skin Treatment is safe to be licked, but not recommended! ResQ Organics donates a percentage of each sale to animal welfare organizations.
Bodhi Dog All Natural Pet Hot Spot Spray is a very popular natural anti-itch formula for any surface wounds and you can use up to three times a day. If your dog is prone to licking the wounds, you should use an e-collar until they heal.
Hydrocortisone is one way to bring down swelling of an infected site fast. I keep a small bottle of Zymox Pet Spray on hand at all times, even in my pets' emergency kits. Use this when you don't have time to cut back fur or to use a cleanser for a more critical wound. Later, you can remove the fur from the wound, but get this spray on fast if the wound is swelling. It sprays on cold, too, which can be effective at relieving pain.
The above recommendations are for surface wounds only. If your choice of hot spot treatment does not show positive results in 24 hours, bring your pet to the vet's office. Anything more than a superficial wound should be treated by a veterinarian.
That's the buzz for today!