Dog Skin Problem Hot Spots What Are They and How Can You Avoid Them

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Dog Skin Problem Hot Spots What Are They and How Can You Avoid Them

by Debra Proctor

Along with summer time and warm weather comes something many dog owners dread like the plague hot spots. This is the most common dog skin problem; causes terrible discomfort for the dog, can be potentially serious and can be very hard to treat.

Hot spots are where the dog has licked incessantly and caused a bald spot with a wet and raw looking sore or skin lesion. These not only look terrible, but also cause the dog much irritation and pain and if infection sets in can cause serious complications. Death can result if the infection becomes serious enough that it has entered the blood stream.

This type of dog skin problem can appear anywhere on the dog?s body and often seems to appear overnight. There are a variety of things that cause these hot spots. Often a dog will receive a small or insignificant scratch from romping and playing outdoors. When moisture is present from the dog swimming, being in the rain, having been given a bath, or rolling in wet grass, bacteria can infect the scratch or small wound. A bacterium invades the area and the hop spot has begun.

The hot spot develops rapidly once the area is infected with bacteria and a serious dog skin problem can develop rapidly within 24 hours. The infection goes into the deep layers of skin on the dog and severe itching and self-trauma develops.

The most common treatment for hot spots is to treat them with a topical antibiotic. The dog skin problem must be thoroughly cleansed and the antibiotic applied to the area. When treatment is first started, the antibiotic needs to be applied often - sometimes as often as every 2 hours. As inconvenient as this is, it is necessary in order to avoid a deeper or more extensive infection. When an extensive or deep area of infection has set in, the dog will often have to be treated with oral antibiotics and the area around the dog skin problem shaved. This involves a visit to the veterinarian and is not only inconvenient but also usually expensive.

Hot spots that cause dog skin problems usually take up to two weeks before the hot spot appears to be healing. Fortunately for the dog, relief is felt much sooner. When your dog first stops the licking and scratching, don?t be fooled into thinking the hot spot is healed. Treatment needs to continue until the lesion is completely dried up and scabbed over.

During the hot summer months, keep your dog well groomed and check frequently for small scratches or the beginning of hot spots. You will save your dog much pain and discomfort and yourself a lot of inconvenience when you catch and treat this type of dog skin problem early on.

Show your best friend how much you love him. Learn to identify and treat the most common dog skin problems by going to:

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