Three Hot Tips For Treating Hot Spots
Copyright © 2012 Dr. Deva Khalsa
The best approach with hot spots is to prevent recurrences by finding the underlying cause. Many things can cause hotspots from matted fur to a new shampoo, from fleas and ticks to allergies. Dogs have many more of the specialized cells that cause inflammation in their skin than we do. We can compare their itchiness from a hot spot to what we experience when we have poison ivy. The more they bother the area, the more it itches and a vicious cycle begins. Itchy skin causes the dog to chew the area furiously. Redness, oozing, pain, and itchiness are hallmark signs. Hair loss is commonly present. Sometimes hair can mat over the lesion, obscuring the size and degree of the problem.
Once a hot spot appears it has to be treated. They usually clear up much more quickly if you catch them at an early stage. Clip the fur from the surrounding area. Some great fixes for hot spots are
(1)A home remedy of baking soda and water, mixed into a paste and then applied to the irritated area and left on for a few hours before being washed off.
(2)Calendula tincture, a natural homeopathic remedy, can be diluted and sprayed on and this can also provide relief and accelerate healing.
(3)Fresh Aloe vera directly from a garden plant leaf placed on the irritated area will soothe immediately.
Hot spots can dramatically increase in size rapidly. What was the size of a quarter may grow by several inches in a few hours. ‘An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’ is a very appropriate adage for hot spots. Matted fur, plant burs, and a new shampoo which may irritate the skin are possible causes. An allergy might also be a cause in dogs where the hot spots occur routinely.
If the underlying cause is allergies, begin an aggressive campaign to rid your home and yard of fleas and work with your veterinarian on a plan to reduce allergy triggers for your pet. Household dust, plant pollen, lawn chemicals, and diet can all cause allergies or can accumulate to create an allergic response. Hot spots can be treated at home if dog owners watch for them and are aware.
Some dogs are more prone to hot spots. Golden Retrievers, Newfoundlands and, in general, dogs with long coats seem to get more hot spots. This is because their long hair tends to mat and cause a moist dermatitis underneath the matted fur. Breeds with long coats that swim can get hot spots if their coats mat over a wet area. If you can catch them early one of the tips above has a really good chance of working.
Dr. Deva Khalsa is the Author of Dr. Khalsa’s Natural Dog. She’s a forerunner in holistic veterinary medicine. Her site provides you with a free newsletter and free nutrition and health information. She has created an incredible preventive supplement for dogs and cats- Deserving Pets Vital Vities. Go to the site and click Contact Us for a free sample.