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Why do dogs get hot spots? 16 Causes-Treatment-Prevention

Skin problems are the common illnesses among humans and pets. Hot spots, also known as acute moist dermatitis in dogs, are among the most common skin problems around the globe. Why do dogs get hot spots?

Dogs are most at risk to affected by hotspots in the summer. These spots are painful, irritating and will begin as a small red area and spread rapidly all over the skin.

Why do dogs get hot spots?

In the article, we will let you know about all the possible causes, prevention, and treatment of hotspots in dogs. You can use the table of content for smooth navigation. 

16 Causes of Hot Spots in Dogs?

Causes of Hot Spots in Dogs

Hot spots are mainly caused by scratching or liking any affected area wounds or insect bites. The continuous scratching or licking causes inflammation and contaminated with bacterial infections. Below are some of the possible causes of hotspots in dogs. 

  • Scratching or licking the affected area
  • Skin infections
  • Ear infection 
  • Injuries and grazes
  • Insect bites
  • Anal Sac disease
  • Food allergies
  • Presence of parasites
  • Thick and fleas
  • Contact with irritants
  • Stress or anxiety
  • Atopic dermatitis
  • Dirty coat
  • Moisture in the coat
  • Boredom or behavioral issues
  • Sticking of pop in coat

Symptoms of Hot Spots in dogs:

Symptoms of Hot Spots in dogs

Hot spots symptoms are often the same as other skin issues, so a veterinarian can confirm the presence or absence of acute moist dermatitis.

Some of the possible symptoms of acute moist dermatitis include.

  • Severe itching.
  • Redness in the affected area
  • Swelling in the affected area
  • Discharge of fluid from the affected area
  • Hair loss

Predisposed breeds to acute moist dermatitis:

Dog breeds having thick coats are mostly at risk with hotspots. Some of the common Predisposed breeds are:

  • Labradors
  • Rottweilers
  • German Shepherds
  • Golden Retrievers

How to prevent hot spots on dogs?

To protect your pet from being affected by acute moist dermatitis, you need to follow the below precautions.

  1. Use dogs cone to protect your dogs from licking and scratching.
  2. Do routine grooming.
  3. Make sure treatment of skin infections.
  4. Make sure treatment of allergies.
  5. Prevent from thick and fleas
  6. Dry your canine coat thoroughly after a bath.
  7. Discourage your furry freeing from licking and scratching.
  8. Keep your dog mentally stimulated.

Best E-collar & cones for dogs hot spots prevention:

SCENEREAL Dog Inflatable Recovery Collar (see price on Amazon)

Remember that: Acute moist dermatitis is an itchy and painful skin problem and may become recurring if proper prevention is ignored. 

Which supplements help for dogs’ hotspots?

Some supplements and foods can also help to prevent your pup from acute moist dermatitis.

Supplements and foods that have anti-inflammatory properties can help in prevention. For example, omega Omega-3 fatty acids. Can dogs eat fish? Because fish contains Omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA.

Best Supplements for dogs hot spots

Zesty Paws Allergy Immune Supplement for Dogs (see price on Amazon)

Treatment for Hot Spots in puppies:

If you observe that your pet is at risk from affected by hot spots. Seek a veterinarian’s help immediately. Your vet will examine the illness condition and will advise accordingly.

Some of the possible treatment procedure for dogs is as follow.

  1. Physical examination with a series of skin tests.
  2. Trimming the hair around the affected area. 
  3. Use of antiseptic solution for cleaning the affected coat.
  4. Prescribed medications such as wound-healing spray to reduce itching.
  5. Cool compress the area  two to four times a day with a cool wet towel.
  6. Antibiotics for bacterial infection treatment.
  7. Medicine to control inflammation, scratching, and allergies.
  8. Use an (E-collar or cone), which helps to stops the dog from chewing and licking the affected area.
  9. It is best to cover the affected coat with a clean bandage to act as a barrier.

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How much time required to treat acute moist dermatitis in dogs?

With proper treatment, a pet can be easily recovered from the hot spots within 4-8 days. But some dogs may take longer. Because the recovery time is dependent on the illness conditions, proper cleaning, grooming, care, and medicine dosage. Some dogs might take 1 to 2 weeks.

How do you get rid of hotspots on a dog?

Prevention is better than the cure. There are two different ways to get rid of hotspots on the dog. With prevention and with treatment. If you want to protect your pet from the hot spots, then you must follow the below prevention and treatment precaution:


  • Routine grooming and cleaning.
  • Treatment of skin infections and allergies.
  • Avoid from thick and fleas.
  • Protect coat from moisture.
  • Discouraging from scratching wounds insects bites.
  • Prevent pet suffering from hotspots.
  • Cover the affected coat with a clean bandage to act as a barrier.
  • Use of E-collar or cone to stops the dog from licking the affected area.


  • Physical examination by a vet with a series of skin tests.
  • Clipping the hair around the affected area. 
  • Gentle antiseptic solution for cleaning.
  • Antibiotics for bacterial infection.

Will a dog hot spot go away on its own?

Yes and No. A dog with a strong immune system, good health, and proper care can recover from the hotspots on its own, and the condition does not become worse and spread.

However, in the maximum ratio of dogs, hotspots do not go away on their own. To get rid of the illness, proper treatment and prevention are required.

Can hotspots on dogs be caused by stress?

Yes, stress is among the causes of hotspots in dogs. Whenever a puppy is under stress, they develop strange behaviors like licking and scratching their parts, which can cause skin injuries, inflammation and lead to hotspots.

Do hotspots hurt dogs?

Yes, hotspots are an itchy, irritating, and painful skin illness. The illness can hurt dogs so much and leads them to pronounced behaviors. The illness needs proper prevention and treatment.

Is apple cider vinegar good for dog hot spots

Yes, apple cider vinegar is good for dog’s hot spots. According to Vet and pet experts, Applying the apple cider vinegar gently and as prescribed can help to heal acute moist dermatitis in pets.

The best way to soothe and promote healing skin problems in puppies is to Apply unpasteurized apple cider vinegar with soft cotton on the affected areas.

Apply the 1 part of apple cider vinegar with approximately 3 to 4 parts of water on your furry friend’s skin.

Best Apple Cider Vinegar for pets skin problems:

Lucy’s Family Owned – USDA Organic NonGMO Raw Apple Cider Vinegar (see price om Amazon)