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Itchy red spot on dog's flank

by E. Lott
(Ft. Lauderdale, FL, USA)

Rash on Dog's Left Flank

Rash on Dog's Left Flank

Today is the 2nd day of this "hot spot" on my dog Brodie's left flank. He started nibbling at the spot yesterday morning and by evening it was pink and had noticeable hair loss.

I put Animal Scents by Young Living (this is the shininess you see on the picture) on it a few times yesterday and have continued applying it today. It seems to alleviate the itchiness for him but today the spot is larger and is darker red and the red seems to be a bit spotty.

Five days ago I applied Sentry Fiproguard Max for flea and tick control, in between shoulder blades as directed. This is only the second month of the Fiproguard, as he used to take an oral flea preventative that I can't buy at this time (the plant that manufactures it is closed and I had to find a replacement).

We live outside Ft. Lauderdale, FL. Brodie is 7 years old and in excellent health. He eats Nutro Ultra Weight Control and milk bones.

He has access to our back yard via a dog door.

Any help diagnosing or treating is appreciated. I also have another dog who has no issue.

Thank you - this is a great website and is very helpful.



Comments for Itchy red spot on dog's flank

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Aug 18, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Itchy red spot on dog's flank
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Erin,
Treatment of a hot spot is best done by preventing Brodie from licking the area. The MORE he licks it, the more it itches, and the more it itches, the more he will lick it.

If Animal Scents by young Living 'tastes' bad and stops him from licking, then by all means continue to apply it. But in my experience, I have not found that technique to be successful.

Applying a greasy product to the skin will 'draw' his attention to it, causing him to lick it off. You will need to keep an E-collar on him ( use the 'soft' version-so he will still be able to use his dog door to go outside) to physically keep his mouth away from the spot.

Since you are in Florida, the FLEA/TICK CAPITAL of the world(!), I suspect this 'hotspot' may have started from a flea or tick bite.

Using Sentry Fiproguard Max topically for flea/tick control is too toxic in my opinion. See our page on Natural Flea Treatment and Prevention. Consider using EVOLV made from Cedar oil instead of Sentry Fiproguard. This product can be applied as often as needed, without any harmful effects.

I suggest bathing the area EVERY DAY for at least ONE week with a baby shampoo or oatmeal shampoo. Use COOL water, to help calm and cool down the skin and make him more comfortable.

A dog's normal body temperature is 101-102 degrees Farenheit, so the water can be cooler than for a human. Bathing will also cleanse the area and remove surface bacteria and prevent secondary infection.

Rescue Remedy can be diluted 20 drops to 2 oz of Spring Water, placed in a pump spray bottle, and kept in the fridge. Spray this on the area as often as needed, especially when he starts licking it in the middle of the night! It can also be added to Brodie's drinking water to help 'calm' him down.


Aug 18, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Itchy red spot on dog's flank PART TWO
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Erin,
Here is the rest of my response.

STOP feeding him DRY DOG FOOD. See if the Nutro Ultra Weight Control comes in a canned version.

Also, adding 1-2 TBSP raw meat (NO RAW PORK OR RAW FISH), would be a healthy addition.

And no more milk bones. If you are trying to help him lose weight, milk bones contain too many calories. A healthy snack would be raw baby carrots, a piece of apple or cantaloupe.

He needs moisture in his diet to keep his skin healthy. And canned or raw diets are LOWER in calories than dry dog food. See our page on 10 Best Dog Food Options for more info.

Seek the help of a holistic veterinarian, if these suggestions are not effective. Hot spots can be very frustrating to treat, and many times a more intensive therapy is needed, such as homeopathy or acupuncture.
Click here to find a holistic veterinarian in your area. Another resource for vets knowledgeable in homeopathy is

Please keep us posted by coming back to this page and clicking the 'click here to add your own comments' link below.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

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DISCLAIMER: The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

- Dog Skin Conditions,
- Dog Itchy Skin,
- Dog Skin Rash,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Skin Rashes, Marks, Spots, Lesions & Patches (including itchy skin and mange) Section

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