Summer Time and Your Pets
I can certainly tell that summer is here! One of the most common medical conditions, in dogs, we see during the hot weather is “hot spots”. Hot spots, Moist Pyoderma, Summer excema, Pyotraumatic dermatitis….its all the same! Here is 5yr old Golden Retriever, Cinnamon to illustrate my point.
A dog hot spot is an area of localized skin irritation that can appear quite superficial or go deep into the skin layers. It is itchy and uncomfortable for your dog and as a result he may be scratching and biting at it and making it much worse very quickly. The affected areas appear red and wet. These area usually start out to be the size of a dime but can rapidly increase in size depending on how much self mutilization has occurred. I have seen hot spots as large as a basketball. Usually hair loss is noted and Hot Spots are quite painful.
Hot Spot on Dogs in Etobicoke
Dogs such as Golden Retrievers or other thick coated dogs are in for their summer groom and trim. Why trim a golden retriever?? To detour Hot Spots!! We see a steady parade of Goldens and similar coated breeds for a thorough brush out, trim and bath this time of year, especially if they have suffered a hot spot in the past.
To treat pets with hot spots we have to shave the area completely to stop it spreading as it spreads very quickly Like a forest fire, a trench is made to stop the flames from spreading hence shaving the area larger than the wound, stops the wet skin discharge from spreading it to the surrounding areas. The area is then washed or disinfected and sometimes washed with an Iodine based liquid.
I may dispense a topical antibiotic/steroid to apply to the area twice daily as well as an accompanying antibiotic to dry the lesions. Sometimes a head collar , T-shirt or light wrap may be recommended to detour the aggressive licking/scratching that may ensue.
The skin wounds take about 2 weeks to heal and hair growth is complete in 12 – 16 weeks.
Once your dog has had a Hot Spot they certainly can get it again!
It is thought that dogs that don’t completely dry after swimming or bathing may be predisposed to Hot Spot but we also see a run of dogs with this condition the dramatic weather change ie 24th of May when the temperatures go for 60 – 85 overnight and the dog hasn’t had time to aclamitize.
At the first sign of itching/scratching or excessive licking of an area..please contact your Veterinarian ASAP. .The sooner the better to get Hot Spots diagnosed and treated as they can certainly get worse very, very quickly.