Hot Spot Natural Cure for Dogs & Cats

dog

And other furbabies too, for that matter!

So, what is a hot spot, you may ask?  Also known as moist eczema, they are a somewhat common skin problem in pets.  They can be caused from a flea bite, an itchy spot, a small cut or scratch, you name it.  It is an area on the pet’s skin that is irritated, causing them to lick and bite at it, further irritating the area.  Often the area will be bright pink or red and hot to the touch, thus the name.

Desi recently came down with a hot spot on one of his rear feet.  It was red, hot, and angry looking.  He had been nibbling away at it and even chewed away a good amount of fur, making it look even worse.  Now, if you have never had any experience with a hot spot, or if your pet has an injury that you have never seen before, obviously you should take them straight to the vet.  This post is just some helpful advice for those of us who are familiar with hot spots and are looking for an effective at home treatment.  I will tell you, I am a registered veterinary technician, and I have had a good amount of experience with these babies.  If I weren’t certain of what it was, I would have him checked by our vet immediately.  The hot spot can quickly get worse and even get infected.  If the cause is a flea bite, you will also need to treat the flea problem, or you aren’t really helping the issue.

Desi’s spot was from a small cut on one of his toes, probably from running around in our backyard and playing with Lucy.  After thoroughly cleaning the area, I made up a mixture of 1/3 Listerine, 1/3 baby oil, and 1/3 water.  I just used a small spray pump bottle, like the ones you find in the travel section of any big box store.  Shake it up, and spray on the affected area, rubbing it in and getting all the nooks and crannies all nice and coated.

I repeated this step several times a day for the first day, and by day two, I saw a huge improvement!  I continued applying a few times a day for about three days total, and now his foot looks good as new!  Well, the hair is still short and growing back, but you know what I mean!  🙂

So why does it work?  The Listerine prevents infection and has anti fungal properties, and the water dilutes it so that the high alcohol content does not burn the inflamed area.  The baby oil seems to help the Listerine really stick to the spot, and crazily enough, does not make an oily mess at all!

This is definitely a good trick to know, especially since often times these little hot spots like to pop up on weekends when the vet is not open.  Give it a try!

This happened…

I should know better.  I do know better.  Really, it’s all my fault, but for the love of gravy!!!

It was only two minutes.  A short phone call, I stepped away while Noah and Sara were innocently watching Dora.  There were entranced, I thought surely they could stay that way for just a minute or two while I took the call.

I came back to a horrific, disgusting, unbelievable mess.  This is the first thing I saw, confusing me until I looked around and saw the source of the mysterious white paste on my coffee table.

lb1

 

At first I thought it might have been lotion or maybe baby powder?  But there is no baby powder in easy reach of the babies, and a quick glance over to the lotion bottle showed it to be untouched.  Scanning the room, I saw this:

lb3

 

At this point, I knew.  Oh, how I knew.  Those little granules strewn about like confetti, the delightful paste on my coffee table.  It was cat litter.  From the litter box.

*barf*

It gets better.  The cats have a basket with a blanket that they sleep in, which also happened to be in the path of nasty.

lb2

 

Isn’t that lovely?  There was cat litter EVERYWHERE.  I think it was mostly Sara, while Noah sat and watched.  As soon as I walked back in the room, he jumped up to go sit on the potty for a good long while, avoiding the, let’s say colorful language that happened to escape me.

lb4

 

That is Katie, wondering why we decided to keep the furless things that are so fascinated with kitty poo.

And now the mug shot of the nasty little girl that made it rain cat litter all over my living room:

lb5

 

She doesn’t look very remorseful, does she?  See that sh*t eating grin?  It’s because she was literally eating sh*t.  Cat sh*t, covered in clumping cat litter.  You know how peanut butter gets stuck to the roof of your mouth when you eat it?  Yeah, well, cat litter clumps into a concrete like lump in the roof of the mouth and between the teeth.  That happy little grin on Sara’s face?  Yeah, that disappeared when I had to spend 20 minutes raking the litter out of her mouth and teeth.

Fun times.

 

Mice are icky.

I’m sure whether you care to admit it or not, you have probably experienced a mouse or two in your house from time to time.  It has nothing to do with cleanliness, rodents, and bugs for that matter, are resourceful little boogers that want to find a way into your house and they will.

We have had mice come visit our home uninvited a few times over the years, but having two cats, and the growing population of stray cats in our neighborhood has greatly reduced that number.  The last time we had a mouse inside our house, our two cats found it and kept it trapped until Abe came home to catch and release the little intruder.

Mice carry diseases, they are gross, filthy little things.  Have you heard about the bubonic plague making a comeback?  Seriously.  2012, and bubonic plague is still around, kickin’ it medieval style.

All this said, we grow up watching adorable little cartoon mice on television, begging us to love them.  Mickey Mouse anyone?  So, it seems natural that when confronted with a mouse, though totally grody as mentioned before, that something inside of you, whether you like it or not, will tend to think that it looks like a sweet little creature.  Something not to be feared, but to be adored and protected.

No, we don’t have a mouse in our house, but the kids did find one outside last week on the way to the bus stop.  Now, as you may recall, they recently found a very dead mouse, while digging around outside.  Probably something that a cat found, played with, chewed a bit, and then left for dead.  Cats are evil like that.

The mouse they found last week was alive, but barely.  I’m pretty sure it was also a kitteh play thing.  We found it wet and not moving much.  I hate to say it, but it was adorable.  Tiny and helpless and just precious.  You know, in that gross you know you aren’t supposed to think this thing is cute kind of way.

I told the kids not to touch it and we went off to catch the bus.  On the way home, I couldn’t help but stop and look at the mouse.  Not wanting to touch it with my hands, bubonic plague!, I grabbed a small stick and gently prodded it, seeing if it could move.  The poor thing seemed scared to death.  He moved, which is a good sign right?  I saw no obvious injuries, no bloody tooth marks, nothing that hinted at what may be wrong.

The thing is, where he was, right out in the open, well, he was easy prey to any cat passing by.  And as I said, we have quite a few cats that pass through our neighborhood.  So.  I coaxed him with the little stick, my home made mouse prod, over to where I thought he would be safer.  I thought to myself how insane the Wildlife Rescue people would think I was if I scooped up this little mouse and brought it to them to save.  I tried to remind myself of how icky this thing was, no matter how cute it may be on the outside.  He could have the zombie virus for all I know!

Probably not, but mice are icky.  Right?

*sigh*

Wanna see the icky mouse?  I took a picture.  It’s what I do.

 

Look at those tiny little paws!  The itty bitty whiskers!

I am such a bleeding heart, bubonic plague be damned.

I resisted the urge to name him and make him a pet, but I worried about him all day until Abe came home and I told him to check if he was still out there.  I asked him to tell me he was gone no matter what, and if he was still there, to move him into the woods but not to tell me.  I want to assume in my goofy little mind that he got his act together, found his way home, and is living happily ever after, bubonic plague free with his adorable little mouse family.

I am crazy, I realize.