A hot spot is a moist, superficial skin infection that develops when normal bacteria on the skin over grows. Hot spots tend to be infected areas that are round, reddened, hairless, oozy, and sometimes covered in a scab. Hot spots occur due to an insult to the skin, itching from allergies, moisture trapped under the fur, insect/flea bite, or matted fur can cause irritation. Once the skin becomes irritated it is a perfect spot for bacteria to overgrow and cause infection. Hot spots can occur on any breed of dog or cat and are most commonly seen in hot or humid summer months.
The first way to treat the hot spot is to clipping and cleaning the area allowing the wound to breathe. Treatment will require a course of antibiotics sometimes both a topical and oral medication are needed. Depending on where the spot is located a e-collar may be recommended. Anti-inflammatory medications are also often needed. Most hot spots resolve in about 10-20 days depending on severity.
Hot spots are usually a result of an underlying allergy. Allergens can be environmental like pollen, from food, or fleas. Dogs with dense undercoats and dogs that swim are susceptible to developing hot spots. Carefully monitoring your pet for licking or chewing their skin can help prevent these infections from forming, as well as keeping them on monthly flea preventives.