Excessive licking can cause hot spots and infection.
Hot spots are surface skin infections and can be extremely painful and uncomfortable for dogs. These hot spots can start by a dog itching and biting at a bug bite or sore. While dog owners can take their dog to the veterinarian, there is no cure for these hot spots, and your vet will usually recommend using over-the-counter or prescription medication. However, before spending too much money on commercial products, a few home remedies should be tried to ease your dog’s pain.
Cut and Clean
Before applying any home remedies you should cut and clean the area. Cut all the hair around the hot spots and clean it with hydrogen peroxide. This will help prevent future infection. Trimming the hair around the hot spot allows air to get to the infection. A damp, warm washcloth pressed on the hot spot will relieve some of the irritation.
Make a salt water solution of approximately two cups warm water and one teaspoon salt. Soak a washcloth in this mixture, wring most of the water out and apply directly to the hot spot. Hold the cloth on the hot spot for at least a few minutes. If there is any pus in the hot spot, this remedy will remove it. It will also reduce any swelling. Do this at least a couple of times every day.
Witch hazel can be purchased at most drug stores and will provide a coolant for the hot spot. The witch hazel will pull some of the heat out of the hot spot, which will provide some relief for the dog.
Black Tea Bags
Boil some black tea- not herbal. You can find this at most grocery stores. After the tea bags have cooled down, apply them directly to the hot spots. Let them stay on the hot spots for at least five minutes and repeat up to six times a day. Black tea has tannic acids, which can heal the sores quickly and help dry out the hot spots.
Preventing your dog from licking and scratching is also key to improving these hot spots. If you see your dog licking or scratching, try and get his mind on something else by giving him a treat or playing outside. Keeping the dog’s nails trimmed will also help prevent deeper scratches, which are easily infected.