Nov 14 2021


Hot-spots are a common problem amongst dogs, and some breeds like golden retrievers, labradors, and rottweilers may be more susceptible to these than others.
What is a hot spot?

A hot-spot can otherwise be known as a ‘moist skin rash,’ acute moist dermatitis, or pyotraumatic dermatitis. It is an area of skin or lesion that looks red, inflamed, and may have matted hair on or around it, and sometimes slimy discharge. They develop very quickly and can progress within hours.

Usually, they can be found around the dogs:

  • Head
  • Neck
  • Tail/backside

What causes hot-spots?

  • Flea infestation
  • Ear infections
  • Allergies
  • Warm & humid weather
  • Wet fur against the skin (for long periods – i.e. under the collar after swimming)
  • Underlying medical conditions

These issues promote bacterial growth, making the area very itchy and potentially sore.

While being relatively easy to spot, your pet will likely alert you to the hot-spot with excessive scratching and licking if the area is within reach.

How are hot-spots treated?

To treat a hot-spot, we will:

  • Trim the fur from around the area
  • Clean the area with an antiseptic
  • Use antibiotics and/or anti-inflammatory treatments

In some cases, ongoing use of antibiotics and/or anti-inflammatory treatments may be required to treat the infection and allow the skin to heal properly. Hot-spots may be sensitive or painful to treat, and we may recommend a general anaesthetic if appropriate.


Due to the fast-moving nature of these infections, we recommend you bring your dog to see us as soon as possible if you suspect a hot-spot is forming. The quicker we can treat your dog, the less chance the hot-spot has of becoming large, difficult to treat, and painful.

If you have any questions or want to make a booking, call us on 09 294 8779, email us, or book online today.

townandcountryvsnz | Pet Articles

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