Cat hot spots are common among breeds that have long hair and dense undercoats that will have a tendency to mat up in fur like balls.
They can be very painful for your cat and can cause hair loss as well as developing intense red, moist and oozing skin conditions.
They are also a very confusing and troubling condition to correctly diagnose in most cases.
They are lesions that are circular in dimension and are usually found on your cats head and neck, as well as their tail or thigh areas.
Hot spots are often referred to as pyotraumatic dermatitis which is a self-traumatic condition where your cat may be the contributing to the actual development.
The affected areas can flare up in a matter of hours and can very easily be mistaken for bite wounds.
In some case they may be self-inflicted due to your cats scratching and biting theses infected areas.
Cat hot spots will almost always occur during the summer or fall months as the weather heats up as the antigen that causes them comes into full fury in attacking your cat.
In cats with particularly long hair coats, the exudate that is produced can hide the actual lesion.
An exudate is any type of fluid that is filtered from the circulatory system and is usually blood.
The most common name given to hot spots is Acute Moist Dermatitis as it is an allergic reaction to some type of an antigen.
Cat hot spots are most generally caused by some type of a parasite such as fleas or mites, but they can also be caused by insect bites.
However, there are also several other potential causes and high of the list are self-inflicted wounds.
Some cats actually start a hot spot either out of boredom or some type of stress.
Other potential causes could include atopy, which is allergic reaction to something inhaled, or a food allergy.
This condition could also be caused by an ear infection, poor grooming habits, burs or any type of plant awn, or in rare cases it could be caused by anal gland disease.
This could be affecting your cat’s skin because of a toxin buildup.
Cat hot spots can also be a very confusing and troubling condition to properly diagnosis. They can occur both internally or externally, and they can also occur several times in a season in your cat.
But they can also occur one time, not appear again for a year or two, and then never show up again at all as they can be that unpredictable.
They also can change in size very drastically and rapidly, as they could be the size of a dime and within a few hours they could be the size of a silver dollar, or bigger, in some cases.
There are several different methods of treatments for cats hot spots but the first thing to do is to identify the cause if possible.
If the hot spot is near the ear, if may be an ear infection, if it is near the back legs it could be anal gland infections.
However, in most cases, it will be fleas.
The first form of treatment will be to shave the area around the hot spot so it can dry out and get some air circulating to it.
However, be very, very cautious as these lesions are painful to your cat. You may want to place a small muzzle on their mouth as they may try to bite because of the pain.
If you cats hair has a tendency to mat or knot up, these knots could be covering the actual infected area that is more severely infected.
Once the hair has been cleaned away, cleanse the area with cool water and a gentle skin cleanser repeating the process at least 3 to 4 times daily.
Once it is cleansed, there are several medications that can be used ranging from oral antibiotics, topical sprays, or medicated shampoos depending on the actual cause.
Black or green tea bags can also be very effective as compresses to reduce the inflammation and ease the pain.
Rhus tox is also a very effective herb that can be used for hot spots.
It is the most recommend natural remedy for poison ivy and it is extremely effective as a compress in easing inflammation, swelling, and the pain associated with these lesions.
Whatever form of treatment that you use, you will want to accompany it with an Elizabethan collar if the lesions are anywhere near the head or the neck.
This will help to prevent your cat from future self-damage by biting or scratching themselves.
There are several preventive steps that you can take to protect against cat hot spots. The most important is to keep fresh water available at all time for your cat.
This will keep them from dehydrating and becoming anxious, but it also helps in a naturally detoxify them.
Keeping your cat well groomed, especially in the hot summer months will also be extremely important.
Brush their hair coats a couple of time a day if you can to keep the hair from matting or knotting; but this also relaxes your cat and if it is caused by stress or anxiety, this will calm them down very quickly.
Your cat loves to be brushed.
Your cat may not like baths, but bathing them is very important in preventing hot spots especially with flea medicated shampoos.
But perhaps the most important preventive measure will be their diets.
Vitamin E deficiency in your cat is by far and away the major cause of skin diseases or allowing their immune system to be breached.
Vitamin E is considered the wonder vitamin for cats as it boosts their immune system, protects against pollutants, and heals the skin very quickly, especially important with hot spots.
Zinc is also important in building the immune system and is especially important in healing and soothing wounds such as the lesions that this condition will present.
But its most important quality to your cat is with their skin. It is well documented in protecting both the skin as well as their hair coats and it should be supplemented along with Vitamin E on a regular basis.
Your pet will most likely experience cat hot spots several times in their lives.
They are extremely painful and anything that you can do to prevent them will help your cat live a much happier and healthier life.