Hot spots are a common condition that occurs in dogs. Your dog may start having inflamed skin lesions which is acute moist dermatitis. The cause may be flea bites or even self-harm as your pet continuously gnaws at an itchy skin leading to an open wound. Unfortunately, the lesions develop into infections and can contain pus. Your first instinct may be to take them to the vet for treatment though some dog owners prefer finding less expensive options at home. Is coconut oil good for dogs? Yes, but can you treat dog hot spots with coconut oil?
Is Coconut Oil Safe to Treat Hot Spots?
The answer is yes. Coconut oil is safe for use on your dog’s hot spots. It can be applied topically over the wound to ease the problem though even if it is ingested, your pet will not suffer any adverse reactions unless they are allergic. The only problem with increased consumption of coconut oil is its high-fat content which could cause health problems later on.
Dog Hot Spots with Coconut Oil
Coconut has lauric acid, a beneficial ingredient because of its antibacterial properties. It is also known for its anti-inflammatory properties hence why it is preferred as a home remedy for itchy spots. For hot spots, pet owners can apply coconut oil to the affected area, which may take a few applications spread out over a few days. During that time, the hot spots are likely to reduce in size. The coconut oil may also provide some much-needed relief for the itching and discomfort of the dog. That will also lead to preventing your dog from licking and scratching the wound so it can heal in time.
How to Give Your Dog Coconut Oil
Owners usually treat hot spots with coconut oil by placing a bit of cream on the hot spot. It can be reapplied as needed for topical cases, and when it starts to work, the lesions will heal in a few days. Coconut oil is safe, so you will not have to worry about your dog licking it off. The topical application also freshens the dog’s coat if it is given with a light touch. You can rub a small amount in your hands for topical usage and gently rub over the coat. However, you need to consult the vet before using coconut oil to treat any wounds. Do not be surprised if the veterinarian instead gives coconut oil to treat the hot spots.
Risks of Applying Coconut Oil to Hot Spots
Coconut oil may be good for topical application, but there are potential problems that may result. For one, it tastes good, so your dog will love licking it off. Now while it is not toxic in small amounts, coconut oil has high-fat levels, so they can lead to pancreatitis. It is also a moisturizer as it keeps the dog’s skin soft. Considering the hot spot is already soft, it can increase the moistness of the wound. Many treatments for hot spots do the opposite, which is to dry out the hot spot and prevent any bacteria from invading the area.
Coconut oil is sticky and oily, which is problematic as it can get over the carpets and furniture and go into the bedding, especially if your dog lies there. The lauric acid present in coconut oil is beneficial as an antibacterial, but it may potentially remove the good bacteria. That causes an imbalance in the wound and can be counterproductive for the same reasons. Even though veterinarians have given coconut oil a slight nod, not much research has been done concerning its effectiveness for dogs. There is also no peer-reviewed research that shows that coconut oil does assist in treating hot spots.
How to Prevent Hot Spots in Your Dog
Grooming your pet regularly, whether it’s done professionally or through DIY dog grooming, is one of the best ways to minimize the canine’s chances of developing hot spots . When your dog is clean, there is less chance of dirt or fleas, which can bite and cause irritation. It would be advisable to trim the dog’s hair like in summer because of the heat and insect bites. The dog’s beddings need to be washed in hot water to remove the fleas from your house. Treat the upholstery with preventive agents as well as the yard. Thirdly, you may want to keep your dog as active as possible. Daily walks or playing will keep them focused on other things, so the hot spots have a chance to heal on their own. It will also keep them distracted so they will not engage in self-destructive behavior.
What is the best thing to put on a dog’s hot spot?
The affected area should be cleaned with antiseptic solutions. Bathing with chlorhexidine shampoo for dogs is also adequate.
Can I put coconut oil topically on my dog’s hot spot?
Coconut oil is safe treating hot spots because it contains agents like lauric acid, which has antibacterial properties. It is also safe, so coconut oil is safe for the dog even if it is ingested.
Why does my dog keep getting hot spots?
Acute dermatitis is common in dogs and can suddenly appear. It is characterized by irritated, red lesions. It can also be caused by fleas or unhygienic conditions that cause the dog to develop skin irritations.
How do I prevent my dog from getting hot spots?
The dog needs to be clean of fleas, ticks, and other parasites. Your dog also needs to be groomed regularly to prevent the coat from matting.