10 Best

Hot Spot Spray For Dogs

of October 2023

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A Guide to Buying a Hot Spot Spray for Dogs

Yehudah Posnick

With the warm weather of spring and summer, you’ll undoubtedly suffer from insect bites. It’s not uncommon to experience also chafing due to excessive sweating. It shouldn’t be surprising that our dogs can suffer from skin irritation, allergies, and bug bites just the same (even more so, since they don’t have any way of removing fleas or ticks by themselves). Once they try to scratch, it can create a wound that gets infected, which are called “hot spots”. And experts say that if you don’t treat them when they’re small, they can get a lot worse when your dog bites or scratches them! Fortunately, there are lots of hot spot sprays that help to relieve your dog’s suffering.

We’ll see various spray formulas to use on hot spots. There are antiseptic sprays that will help against infection. And there are others with cooling, soothing ingredients to stop itching. And there are also sprays with moisturizing ingredients, which will also reduce skin irritation. Whatever your dog’s problem is, there should be a hot spot spray to do the trick!


What are “hot spots”?

Hot spots are instances of “acute moist dermatitis”: areas of inflamed, irritated, and infected skin that can be caused by various factors such as allergies, insect bites, or excessive scratching and licking. Hot spot sprays are formulated to help alleviate the symptoms and promote healing.

What does hot spot spray for dogs do?

Hot spot spray for dogs is a topical solution specifically designed to provide relief for hot spots. The main purpose of hot spot sprays is to soothe the affected skin and provide relief from itching and discomfort. They usually contain ingredients that have antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, and cooling properties to help reduce redness, swelling, and itching. Some common ingredients found in hot spot sprays for dogs include aloe vera, tea tree oil, hydrocortisone, witch hazel, and chamomile.

How do hot spot sprays work?

These sprays help to clean and disinfect the hot spot, preventing further infection and promoting healing. It may also provide a barrier against bacteria and other irritants. Additionally, some hot spot sprays have a bitter taste, which can deter dogs from licking or biting the area, allowing it to heal more effectively.

It's important to note that while hot spot sprays can provide temporary relief and aid in the healing process, they are not a substitute for veterinary care. If your dog has hot spots or any other skin issues, it's best to consult with a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.

Types of Hot Spot Spray For Dogs

There are several types of hot spot sprays available for dogs, each with its own formulation and intended purpose. Here are some common types of hot spot sprays:

  • Antiseptic Sprays: These sprays contain ingredients with antimicrobial properties to help kill bacteria and prevent infection in hot spots. They often include ingredients like chlorhexidine, povidone-iodine, or benzalkonium chloride. For instance, the Sulfodene Medicated Hot Spot & Itch Relief Spray contains benzalkonium chloride as its active ingredient. It also uses ingredients that you’ll find in other preparations, such as apple cider vinegar, witch hazel, tea tree oil, and aloe vera gel.

Sulfodene Medicated Hot Spot & Itch Relief Spray

Another example is the Vetericyn Store Hot Spot Spray. Its active ingredient is hypochlorous acid, which is used in many skin care products as a disinfectant.

Vetericyn Store Hot Spot Spray

  • Anti-Itch Sprays: These sprays focus on relieving itching and irritation associated with hot spots. They typically contain ingredients like hydrocortisone or lidocaine, which have anti-inflammatory and numbing effects to alleviate discomfort. An example is the Zymox Topical Hot Spot Spray for Dogs and Cats. It has 0.5% hydrocortisone to relieve itching due to germs, fungi, yeast, or allergic reactions.

Zymox Topical Hot Spot Spray for Dogs and Cats

  • Natural or Herbal Sprays: These sprays are made from natural ingredients and botanical extracts known for their anti-inflammatory and soothing properties. Ingredients like chamomile, calendula, or tea tree oil are commonly found in natural hot spot sprays. An example is the Burt’s Bees for Pets Natural Relieving Itch & Hot Spot Spray. It contains chamomile and rosemary to reduce irritation.

Burt’s Bees for Pets Natural Relieving Itch & Hot Spot Spray

  • Moisturizing Sprays: These sprays focus on hydrating and moisturizing the affected skin to promote healing. They often contain ingredients like oatmeal, coconut oil, or Vitamin E, which can help soothe and nourish the skin. One such product is the earthbath Hot Spot Relief Spritz, which contains colloidal oatmeal, Vitamin E, and coconut-derived conditioner.

earthbath Hot Spot Relief Spritz

It's important to carefully read the product labels and choose a hot spot spray that is specifically formulated for dogs. Additionally, it's always a good idea to consult with a veterinarian before using any new product on your dog, especially if they have underlying health conditions or if the hot spots are severe or persistent.

What reviewers say

We went over some customers’ impressions of the hot spot spray that they bought:

  • Apply after giving the dog a bath: Some manufacturers of hot spot spray also sell shampoos and rinses to help you prepare your dog for the spray. When applied after a bath, you can expect to see results from the spray in around three days.

  • Treatment depends on the hair type: You may have trouble spraying directly onto a wound if your dog has long hair. One customer who has a chihuahua with fine, long hair applied the spray to her own hand and then used her free hand to part her dog’s hair where the dog has a hot spot. She then rubbed the spray onto the hot spot.

Important Features

Here are some tips about features to look for when choosing a hot spot spray for dogs:

  • Bittering agent to prevent licking: Since dogs typically lick their sores, they might lick off the spray after you have applied it to a hot spot. In order to prevent that, some sprays, such as the Tomlyn Allercaine Hot Spot Spray for Dogs, have a bitter ingredient added, such as bitter apple.

  • Good for cats as well: Cats can also develop hot spots, and many of the products that are safe for dogs can be used on your cat as well. They have the same instinct to lick their wounds, so it’s preferable to use a spray that has a bitter taste.

  • Preparing the wound: Some sprays require that you clean the wound before applying the spray. But, since the area is sensitive, your dog may not like that. On the other hand, treatments that kill germs, such as the Zymox Topical Hot Spot Spray for Dogs and Cats don’t require any pre-cleaning. In fact, pre-cleaning the wound would actually make the treatment less effective.

Final Verdict

We went through some of the ingredients of the best hot sprays for dogs. You’ll notice that many of them use a variety of approaches, trying to reduce itching, soothe the wound, and kill bacteria all at once. The right treatment may depend on how your dog developed the hot spot. Trying one of these sprays is a good idea, before resorting to consulting a veterinarian. You may succeed in giving your dog relief on your own!

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