What’s That Smell?!

You and your dog have spent the day enjoying water activities. Now he or she has an incredibly funky smell and irritated skin. Be aware that the scent may not be just “wet dog”. It’s possible your best friend might have pyotraumatic dermatitis: a skin infection commonly known as a “hot spot”. These infections are caused by bacteria and are usually very itchy, smelly and gooey. Bacteria love to live in places that are warm, dark and moist. Dogs with damp floppy ears, tightly matted fur or soggy wet feet are especially prone. These infections can occur almost anywhere, including the side of the face (under the ears), flanks and in-between toes.

“Hot Spots” are very uncomfortable and potentially painful for your pet. It is always best to seek treatment from your veterinarian as soon as you suspect this problem. It is important to shave the fur away from the hot spot to allow better air circulation and healing. This may require sedation to decrease your pet’s distress. Fur traps warmth and moisture which may have caused the infection to begin with. Although this may leave your dog with a funny hair-cut, he or she will thank you for it! The veterinarian will likely perform an initial cleansing of the area, and prescribe an antibiotic to use daily. And, just like a child with chicken pox, your dog won’t know when to stop scratching or licking. He or she may need to wear an Elizabethan collar (aka “the cone of shame”) to prevent this. It will take a week or so for the infection to fully resolve, but your dog should start feeling better almost immediately after these treatments.

To prevent hot spots, make sure you bathe, thoroughly rinse and thoroughly dry your furry friend after any fun water activities. Keep fur groomed and brushed, even if your pet has short fur. If your pet is walking through extremely wet areas, clean and dry their feet afterwards. There may be some very wet or mucky areas that might need to be avoided altogether. Staying clean and dry can help you and your dog have a safe and happy summer.



Dog thinking about ticks and fleas

Year-round protection means more peace of mind!

“Tick season” used to mean spring/summer/fall, with a break over the winter – the colder weather meant that we could take a break from worrying about these pesky bugs and the diseases they can transmit. But in the last few years, we’ve seen a change creeping up on us, with the weather staying warm later into the season, and spring arriving earlier each year – and the bugs are loving it!

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Last updated: December 17, 2020

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we are pleased to advise that effective May 19, 2020 some restrictions on veterinary practices have been lifted. Based on these changes, below are some important updates to our operating policies.


This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, heartworm testing, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!



We are OPEN with the following hours:

- Monday to Friday: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
- Saturday: 8:00 am - 1:00 pm
- Sunday: CLOSED


Have you welcomed a new furry family member to your home? We’d love to meet them! Visit our Must Know New Pet Owner Information page for useful resources and helpful recommendations for new pet owners.

Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

Your dedicated team at Westbridge Veterinary Hospital