Dog Hot Spot Medication

A dog hot spot is a lay term for acute moist dermatitis, a condition that is relatively common among dogs of virtually all breeds. This acute condition develops as a result of some irritation in the skin. The result is a reddened, moist area of the skin that may have open sores or lesions. Dogs are generally drawn to this area and may prevent it from naturally healing by constantly licking, chewing, gnawing or pawing at the irritated portion. In order to relieve their discomfort and to help the spot to heal more rapidly, there are several different types of medication that you can administer with the help of your veterinarian.

The most commonly used hot spot medications and treatments are:

  • Antibacterials
  • Drying solutions
  • Antibiotics
  • Home care


Antibacterial topical solutions, like clorhexidine, are among the most effective ways of reducing the infection at the site of the moist hot spot. These solutions are available in mild concentrations at your veterinarian's office; if you suspect that your pet has a hot spot based on the appearance of his skin, take him to the vet and ask for a prescription. Apply the topical antibacterial solution multiple times per day, as recommended by your veterinarian, and be sure that your pet is not able to lick at the solution or to otherwise remove it from the hot spot itself.

Drying Solutions

Drying solutions, like Burrow's solution, are chemical treatments that help to reduce the amount of pus and other fluids that are created at the site. These can contribute to further irritation on your dog's part, and they may cause your pet to bite at or lick the hot spot, which only makes the healing process slower. A good drying solution can also help to ease his discomfort. Burrow's solution is available without a prescription at certain pharmacies and stores. If you're interested in administering this to your dog to treat his hot spot, however, it's still a good idea to check in with your veterinarian for additional advice and assistance in dosage.


Occasionally, if there is a secondary bacterial infection that results from the hot spot, you may need to give your dog antibiotics to reduce the infection and to stop it from spreading. This is a very important measure to be aware of, but you'll need your vet's help in order to do so.

Home Care

Although not a medication, one of the most important ways that you can help to treat your dog's hot spot is through adequate home care. Ensure that your pet is comfortable at all times, and keep a close eye on him so that he isn't able to to bite or lick at the hot spot. Ease his pain in other ways, if possible.

For more information about hot spots and how to best treat them, speak with a veterinarian. Take your dog to the vet if you suspect he may have a hot spot or similar issue.