Listerine may relieve hot spots very briefly

Published Sept. 6, 2004|Updated Aug. 28, 2005

Can you use Listerine to treat hot spots?

Hot spots are lesions on an animal caused by chewing and/or scratching from insect bites, parasites and/or allergies. These serious irritations often become infected, and Listerine does have antibacterial effects.

"It's just that there are better products which will be more effective," says veterinary dermatologist Dr. Karen Campbell. She adds that because Listerine is a cooling agent, the mouthwash might provide temporary relief if you have nothing else available.

While treating the hot spots is necessary, it's even more important to determine their cause. If you suspect your pet has hot spots, see your veterinarian.

Quelling aggression

My dog won't allow me on my own bed. And if I give my wife a good-night kiss, he attacks me. Apart from that, my Lhapsu (Lhasa apso/Shih Tzu) is an affectionate dog. Any advice?

Aggression is a serious issue, and a reason for to you to get hands-on help. However, you can start by putting your pooch on a leash before bedtime, according to dog trainer Babette Haggerty-Brennan, a dog trainer in Jupiter, and author of Woman's Best Friend: Choosing and Training the Dog That's Right for You (Contemporary Books, $14.95).

At first, let your wife deal with getting the dog off the bed. Instead of yanking her off, she should use a treat. Transition from using the treat as bribery to using it as a reward for obeying the command "off."

Meanwhile, you should take over feeding the dog. Tell her "sit" before every meal. In fact, have her "sit" before she gets treats, toys or anything else she wants. Also, you should play with the pooch as often as you can, but follow your rules; you determine when playtime begins and ends _ not the dog.

International move

We're relocating to Italy and, unfortunately, I can't take my beagle along. Do you have any suggestions for finding the perfect home for my slightly overweight dog?

Why not take your dog with you?

The flight would be arduous, and traveling in the cargo hold is not the most pleasant thing in the world. However, pets do travel internationally without incident. With an international travel certificate, which includes information on vaccine protection, and with proof of ownership, as long as your dog appears healthy, she would be welcome to the country. Eating too much pasta might be the greatest danger to your already paunchy pal. For further information, contact the Italian consulate nearest to you.

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