My dog has a hot spot and I don't want to put a damn cone on him. Advice?

Golden retriever, meaning they get them all the time and by now I’m familiar with them.

For those who don’t know, a hot spot its when some irritation–a bit of sand, or whatever*–gets itched at by the dog, and eventually the hair gets pulled out a little and the skin starts to become scratched and red and abraded.

A really bad, unattended-to large hot spot can be a real vet situation, when it suppurates and he might even need some antibiotics. This is by no means that.

What I do is put a little Bond’s Medicated Salve and powder on the thing–my breeder also mentioned that black schmear that football players wear on their cheek against the sun–and easy peasy. But they still want to scratch/bite where it itches.

This one’s right at the base of his penis, and I’ll watch hime when I can. I can’t think what else to do besides getting out the Hateful Cone of Shame. Any ideas?
*Or, naturally, which my wife without evidence insists, when one’s husband was terribly terribly careless and nicked his flesh while cutting off a hard mat of hair the other day.

There are “repellant” sprays you can use (e.g. sour apple) or vinegar in a spray bottle, but: 1) check for reactions on the area, 2) it could backfire–our first Border Collie developed a taste for the sour apple and started doing “bad” things just to get a blast; you know how they are.

IIRC, you can give dogs benadryl (have a pill, I think). That may stop down the cycle of itching the skin because it’s irritated, but it’s irritated because he’s scratching it. Especially if it’s something like a bug bite. Some time of anti itch cream may help as well.
But a call to your vet may be in order. Hopefully, they’ll give you some home remedies to try instead of coming in.

nitpick: I think you mean prepuce, not penis. His penis is the red, fleshy tissue within the skinned/haired prepuce.

With my dogs, a hot, wet compress applied for 10-15 minutes twice daily, followed by a gentle astringent (like sea-breeze or witch-hazel) works wonders.

Diphenhydramine (roughly 1 mg per pound) helps if it is very itchy.

Maybe try a t-shirt or light weight pajamas to cover the area, but not tightly. We used light weight pjs when our dog was recovering from knee surgery to cover the area.

Alternatively, there are inflatable neck pillow things that are easier to move around in than a cone.

I did this in the spring this year. I don’t have the math off the top of my head, but 1whole pill 2x a day for my 55 lb dude was well within accepted dose. Yes, I spoke with my vet about it.

I had a “wife without evidence” once too. :slight_smile:

And if somebody had nicked your foreskin with scissors the other day, you’d be doing a lot more about it than licking it excessively. :smiley:

Hot pepper spray or an equivalent. Our dog Dude was chewing the fur off her legs. After a couple of weeks of ‘Bad Dog Spray’ all we had to do was say the words if she started in. A month later the fur had grown back, never a problem again.

Rather than a cone, you may be able to use a something like a neck brace. It’s a rigid band that makes it hard for him to bend his neck backwards to bite at his rear. It’s not 100% effective, but it’s more comfortable for him to wear.

I like this stuff, for minor hot spots. My dog sometimes gets obsessive over mosquito bites, and this helps relive minor inflammation.

Benadryl usually just makes them tired, but also sometimes cranky. I prefer loratadine, though it is a bit hard to dose, as it is about 1mg per 10 lbs, and the pills generally come in 10mg. That is what I have given my dog for her seasonal allergies.

As far as a nick, it’s not that hard to do. I’ve seen some pretty serious wounds inflicted on dogs by owners trying to remove mats, but even a small scrape that you don’t notice is something that he will notice on such a sensitive area.

A leash and constant control and supervision.
I know it’s not really possible for one person to do. But if there are a couple of adults it can be managed. Other than that it’s the cone of shame.

Fortunately, I haven’t had to deal much with hot spots-- Retrievers seem especially prone to them. I have never had a Retriever. But I did have a dog who got a hot spot once. The combination of Benadryl and hydrocortisone creme fixed it up. You might check with the vet to get the dose right, though. There are different strengths of hydrocortisone creme, and I don’t remember which I used. It can relieve the itch of poison ivy on me, though, so it’s pretty potent stuff.

You might want to make sure there is no broken skin at this point, though, whether from chewing, or nicking, it doesn’t matter. You don’t want an infection. Antibiotic ointment just like we use for ourselves works on dogs, and is safe for them; I’ve been directed by a vet to use it for minor scrapes and other non-puncture wounds. There’s a type with lidocaine in it, which would numb the area a little. I don’t know if that would be advised or not.

You really might need to call the vet-- but not take the dog in, just call.

I wonder if there’s some way to bandage the area.

I use Sulfodene for random skin itches. It’s as much a hand cream as an antiinflamatory. It’s thick & sticky. And stinky. Kind of like bag balm, if you’ve ever tried that, with salicylic acid and benzocaine. It’s gooey but soothing.

Keep it away from the eyes, though.

My dog has had these “hot spots” twice.

The vet touched the area and smelled his finger. Said it smelled of saliva. Apparently if the area is moist, it won’t heal.

Here, the “hot spot” is caused by mites. They get under the skin and eat the hair follicles. Left unattended, like some street dogs here, they eventually consume all the hair. And without treatment, they die.

The vet gave two injections, to kill the mites. But the area (about 3 inches) needed to heal. But the saliva wouldn’t allow it.

Put on the cone. I now it is embarrassing. But it is necessary.

It took six weeks for the area to return to normal.

Have you tried hollandaise?

That cheap Equate 3-in-1 antibiotoc ointment applied once daily to a hotspot on my dogs ankle–a bit bigger than a quarter–got rid of it.


Spare the cone, spoil the pup. Two days of the cone and I’d bet he is fine. Have you tried GentaVed Topical spray (or generic equivalent)? It works on our pup.

I had great success with liquid Orajel. It numbed the spot so the dog forgot about it. A friend of mine recommends Preparation H- it has the same active ingredient (benzocaine).

Neosporin with pain relief, or as someone above said, the generic 3-in-1, but make sure it has benzocaine. Once you stop the itching/pain, he’ll leave it alone. Right now it feels like a bug is crawling on that spot, and the dog will instinctively go after it; he can’t stop himself.

I also second the inflatable neck thing. Those antibiotic creams are petrolatum based, and petrolatum tends to leak out the behind once ingested. You don’t want that. :eek:

OP here. Thanks guys, for everything. I’ve put some Benadryl cream on the hot spot on top of the Bond’s Medicated, and I’ll see what I’ll see and report back.

For the interested, and rather than hijack this thread, I’ve just posted [Histamines are inolved in any and all “places I gotta scritch?” Specifically, scabs and under casts?](Histamines are inolved in any and all “places I gotta scritch?” Specifically, scabs and under casts?).

Again, thanks.