What Causes Hot Spots in Dogs and Cats?
Infections in dogs and cats present themselves in many different ways. As a pet owner, being able to detect an infection early can save your pet from severe pain and discomfort. Unfortunately, in most cases, symptoms present themselves once the infection has progressed. But, don’t panic.
It is a controllable and completely curable condition, especially when you know what the underlying problem is. Here, you will learn what a hot spot is, what it looks like and most importantly, what causes them in both dogs and cats. That way, you know what to do the next time your pet suffers from a hot spot.
What Is a Hot Spot?
Medically, a hot spot is called a Pyotramatic or moist dermatitis. It presents itself in dogs as a moist area on the dog’s skin that is usually reddened and oozes with watery liquid. Cats present similar symptoms. Hot spots can be painful and very itchy; plus, in prolonged cases, they can also lead to loss of fur around the affected area.
How Can You Tell If Your Pet Has a Hot Spot?
At first, it can be hard to notice, because it appears under your pet’s fur. However, there are tell-tale signs (most of them behavioral changes) that can alert you that your cat or dog has a hot spot:
- The site of the infection is very itchy
- Your pet constantly scratches a single spot
- They might also try to chew the area to relieve the itchiness
- In certain cases, your pet might lick the affected area.
- Moist lesion on the affected area
Of course, scratching and biting do not help, since it tears into the wound making it worse.
Other signs that your dog might be having a hot spot include abnormal aggression (especially with the affected site), inflammation and swelling in a localized patch of the skin, crusted scabs or oozing sores, dry scaly skin and sometimes an unpleasant odor from the lesion.
What Causes Hot spots?
Hot spots don’t just appear – there is an underlying factor that causes them. With that in mind, there are a few things that can lead to hot spots.
Fleas and other pests
Typically, anything that causes the cat or dog to scratch can easily result in a hot spots. These include flea allergies, matted fur, insect bites, and even chewing or licking as a result of boredom or anxiety.
Allergies and infections
Food allergies, ear infections, anal gland infections, and presence of foreign objects under the fur can cause hot spots. Cuts and abrasions on the skin may be another reason.
Ultimately, hot spots signal imbalance of healthy bacteria that is found on on your dog’s or cat’s skin. The imbalance is normally caused by one of the reasons mentioned above, but other factors could come into play.
Climate and temperature
Summer heat and humidity can make hot spots worse. Lack of proper grooming is another way to increase the problem. While petting or playing with your pet, it might be a good idea to check any swellings you might feel to make sure it’s not a hot spot.
How Do I Treat My Pet’s Hot Spots?
To determine what the underlying problem is, you will likely need a visit to your vet. By figuring this out and providing the necessary treatment, it is possible to completely get rid of hot spots. But for the time being, you’ll need to make your pet all better and get rid of that annoying itchiness.
For this, try EcoSpot! It works on all types of hot spots, including those caused by fungi, bacteria, yeast, skin mites and even dermodex. It’s completely natural and backed by many happy customer reviews.
To help any medication work better, you can shave the area around the hot spot. This makes cleaning the lesion easier and medication can penetrate the spot more efficiently.
Your pet doesn’t have to suffer in silence. Every little thing that your furry friend does out of the ordinary is an indication of something good or bad. In this case, constant scratching is a give-away that your pet may be suffering from a hot spot.