Hot spots is the common term used for acute moist dermatitis, an inflammatory condition of the skin in dogs. Hot spots are typically warn, painful and moist spots on the skin that can occur anywhere on the dog's body, according to "Dog Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook," by veterinarian Liisa D. Carlson and medical doctor James M. Giffin.
Acute Moist Dermatitis (Hot Spots)
Dogs at risk for hot spots have thick coats. Hot spots can occur before shedding when the dead skin and dead hair are still in contact with the skin, according to Carlson and Giffin. Hot spots can be brought on by parasites such as fleas and mites or by lack of grooming, ear infections and skin diseases. The hot spot typically is around one to four inches large and has a foul-smelling odor. Because hot spots are painful for the dog, they should be cared for immediately.
Contact a veterinarian for the initial treatment since as these are painful wounds. For later home treatments, clean the wound using Betadine solution or Nolvasan shampoo. After the skin dries, apply an antibiotic cream. An Elizabethan dog collar should be used to prevent the dog from licking the wound while it's healing.
Over the counter medications
Gimborn medicated hot spot lotion is one medicated lotion that can be used to soothe hot spots. Do not use this medication for more than three days in a row without approval from a veterinarian. Another medication in spray form is Tomlyn Allercaine Hot Spot Spray for Dogs.
Over the counter shampoos
Oatmeal shampoo can be used on hot spots, as can Veterinarian's Best Itch Relief Hot Spot Shampoo For Dogs and Cats. Oatmeal shampoo can be used for routine baths, but shampoos designed for hot spot relief should only be used when hot spots are evident.
Prevention of hot spots
Hot spots can be prevented by regular grooming, including daily brushing and regular bathing. If the hot spots return despite regular grooming and other treatments, have your veterinarian check your dog for allergies.