How to Treat a Dog Who Has Scratched Himself Too Much

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Things You'll Need

  • Hot spot spray

  • Antihistamine ointment


Itching is a common sign that your dog has a flea or tick problem, so be sure to check him each month and apply a flea preventative.

Hot spots and abrasions can make your dog miserable.

Dogs do not possess the self-awareness to notice when they are doing more harm than good. Because of this, your dog may scratch himself until he bleeds or gnaw on an area of his body until it becomes raw and sensitive. Treating theses hot spots and scabs is relatively simple, but you will need to find the cause if you want to completely solve the problem.

Step 1

Examine the wound. A small hot spot or raw area can be treated at home but large ones will require the assistance of your veterinarian.

Step 2

Apply a hot spot spray or antihistamine ointment to the affected area. This will help soothe the itch and make your dog less likely to continue scratching.


Step 3

Place a protective cone over your dog's head if he is using his mouth to scratch the area. Blocking his access gives the wound time to heal.

Step 4

Determine what is causing the itch in the first place. Some dogs have food allergies, some have dry, sensitive skin, and some dogs are so bored they do not have anything to do but scratch. Your vet can run some tests to help you determine the true cause of the itching problem and work with you to develop a solution.

Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.