Existing Approaches To Dog Bite Prevention
Current dog bite prevention interventions take two formsenvironmental management and education. In the UK, nationwide environmental management was implemented in the form of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991, after several highly publicised dog attacks. This has been heavily criticised and thought to have had little impact on hospital admissions for dog bite injuries. In contrast, the City of Calgary, Canada, has seen a reduction in the frequency of dog bites frequency following the introduction of a compulsory dog licensing scheme and an introduction of subsidised dog training classes.
Talk To Your Vet About Whether Antibiotics Are Recommended For Your Dog Should They Get Bit By A Snake
If you are bitten by a snake, or your dog is bitten by a snake, call your vet immediately. The vet will decide if antibiotics are necessary. If the bite occurs in an area where bacteria may become trapped, such as in the ear or the foot, antibiotics may be recommended to prevent infection from developing.
Most snakes are non-venomous, and these types of bites rarely require antibiotics. However, if your dog is bitten by a snake, its important to stay calm and get the snake away from them as soon as possible. If you notice any swelling or redness around the bite site, call your vet right away.
How Should Dog Bites Be Managed
Box 1 suggests how to take a history and do an examination in a patient presenting with a dog bite, and box 2 outlines initial management procedures. Where adequate debridement of deep penetrating wounds is not possible, it is common practice, although unsupported by strong evidence, to irrigate the wound with 250 ml saline, using a 19 or 20 gauge needle or plastic intravenous catheter on a 35 ml syringe.w3 w4
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Antibiotics : A Guide To Doxycycline For Dogs
Doxycycline for dogs is a broad-spectrum antibiotic from the class of tetracycline antibiotics.
In veterinary medicine, Doxycycline is used to treat infections caused by various bacteria and microbes. The antibiotic works by inhibiting protein synthesis and changing the permeability of the cytoplasmatic membranes.
Doxycycline is perfectly safe for dogs when prescribed by a veterinarian and used following the vets instructions .
What Else Can I Do To Avoid Being Bitten By A Cat Or Dog
Avoid patting or stroking a dog or cat who doesn’t know you. Check with the owner that their pet likes this before doing so. Be very wary around stray dogs or cats, particularly if they look ill or neglected. Do not approach stray animals in countries where rabies is a risk. Avoid approaching animals that look aggressive. For example, cats who are hissing or who have the fur on their tail sticking up, or dogs that are snarling or baring their teeth. Avoid approaching dogs that have puppies, or cats that have kittens, as they may bite if they fear their young are at risk from a stranger.
Try to avoid running from a dog, as their natural instinct may be to chase you. Stay still and keep calm if approached by an unfamiliar dog.
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Check For Dog Bite Damage
Its fairly common for dogs to snark at each other if one is being too rude, especially if the dogs are worked up about something or vying for the same resource. These minor scuffles often dont leave any injuries. But if your dog is in a dust-up, you should still check him over carefully afterward and look for signs of a dog bite.
Part his hair and check the skin under areas that are wet from saliva. For dogs with long or thick coats, a brush or comb may be helpful to make a thorough and systematic examination. If the bite was just a warning nip or your dog has some evasion skills, there may just be a scrape from the other dogs incisors .
The longer canine teeth can make deep punctures and potentially also tear the skin. If you find one puncture mark, always check for more, keeping in mind the size of the attacker. There will frequently be two punctures from the upper canine teeth fairly close together , and then a matching pair on the opposite side of your dogs limb or neck. The depth and number of punctures will vary depending on the size of the dog, the force of the bite, and the location of the bite.
The ears and face are common locations for bite wounds, as well as the neck and legs. Dog bites to the ears will often bleed excessively, even if its just a small nick. Bites in areas with thicker fur can be more difficult to find, and you may not discover them until your dog calms down enough to lick at them or begins to limp from a leg wound.
When Should I Go To An A& e Department With A Cat Or Dog Bite
In some situations you may need specialist or urgent treatment and should go directly to your nearest A& E. For example, if:
- The bleeding from the wound does not stop.
- The bite is on the head of a child.
- The bite is more than skin-deep – for example, if you can see bone or tendon in the wound.
- There is a ‘foreign body’ in the wound – for example, a part of the animal’s tooth.
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Avoiding Trouble In The First Place
If your dog is bitten, it can feel a bit like it has come out of the blue, but learning to watch for and understand signs that another dog is frightened or anxious could help you to prevent your pup from being bitten.
Dogs as a rule don’t go looking for trouble. In fact they will go out of their way to avoid dangerous or aggressive situations. To this end, a dog will typically give a number of warning signals before it bites.
The first important thing to note is that fear or anxiety in dogs can stem from a current situation, or could be related to past experiences. While you may not believe that there is anything happening that could cause another dog to become fearful, a dog could be feeling extremely anxious.
What Should I Do
You should clean the wound no matter how small the cut to the skin. There are many germs in animal mouths. Cleaning will reduce the chance of infection. If the wound is small, you can clean it yourself. Just use ordinary tap water. Let it bleed freely, unless the bleeding is very heavy. If the wound is bleeding heavily, use a clean pad, or preferably a sterile dressing, to apply pressure until you can get medical treatment. Wounds that are large, deep, punctured or dirty are best cleaned and assessed by a nurse or doctor.
After cleaning, cover the wound with a sterile, non-sticky dressing. Consider going to see your doctor, or attending A& E.
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Recovery Of Puncture Wounds In Dogs
Your veterinarian will give you instructions for home care that usually include keeping the puncture wounds clean, and changing bandages. Bandages should be checked for blood, dirt, wetness and tightness. If drainage from the wound is clear, that is a good sign of healing. However, if drainage is thick, bloody, yellow or green, contact your veterinarian, as this means the wound is still infected. Leg bandages may need extra protection from becoming wet or dirty outside.
Use only tap water or a warm saline solution to clean wounds. Do not use hydrogen peroxide, rubbing alcohol, soaps, shampoos, oils, or herbal teas to clean the wound unless approved by your veterinarian. They can delay healing, or can be toxic if taken internally.
Antibiotics and pain medications may be prescribed, and need to be used as directed. Do not discontinue use of antibiotics early unless instructed by your veterinarian. Keep your dog from licking or chewing any wounds or bandages, and use an Elizabethan collar to help prevent that if needed.
Is Antibiotics Safe For Snake Bite In Dogs
Antibiotics can be used to prevent or treat bacterial infections caused by snake bites. However, antibiotics are not effective against snake venom.
The reason why this type of snake bite will not become apparent immediately is that the venom from a rattlesnake has a large molecular size and cannot pass through an intact skin barrier. A bite from this type of snake can cause pain and swell at the site of the bite, but it does not cause any other symptoms in dogs or cats until about 24 hours after being bitten most cases, antibiotics are not needed to treat snake bite wounds. If your dog has been bitten by a snake, you should seek prompt veterinary attention.
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Clean The Dog Bite Wound
When you find a wound, flush it with slightly soapy water. Gently running water is best if possible, or wet a washcloth and then squeeze the water out onto the bite. Sterile saline is another great option if you have it available. This will help flush any debris out of the wound, including bacteria that could cause infection.
Treatment For Your Dog’s Bite Wound
After a thorough examination, your pet’s wound will be cleaned and bandaged if necessary. Your veterinarian may prescribe a round of antibiotics such as amoxicillin-clavulanate, or enrofloxacin to help fight infection and try to prevent an abscess from developing. Pain killers may also be prescribed to help your dog feel more comfortable.
In more severe cases, your vet may recommend surgically removing the damaged tissue and placing a drain in order to help your dog’s body rid itself of any pooling infection.
Your veterinarian may also recommend diagnostic testing such as x-rays or ultra sounds to look for injuries that are not immediately obvious.
To prevent your pup from licking the wound, which increases the risk of infection, your vet will likely recommend that your dog wear an Elizabethan collar .
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Antibiotics For Dog Bites
Dog bites can often result in infections and using antibiotics can prevent these infections in many cases. Topical over the counter antibiotics can be applied immediately after cleaning the dog bite wound. Oral antibiotics may be recommended if the bite wound is deep or if there is an infection present.
What Will Your Doctor Do
Your doctor will want to know more about the dog that bit you and how it happened. He or she will also likely clean the wound again, apply antibiotic ointment and prescribe antibiotics, such as Augmentin, if theres an infection concern.
After any bite, you should make sure you know when your last tetanus shot was and that youre up-to-date. While a tetanus immunization is good for 10 years, Dr. Sayles notes, your doctor may recommend a booster if the wound is dirty and its been more than five years since your last shot.
Depending onthe wound, your doctor may also recommend stitches. Generally, though, dogwounds are left open to heal unless they are on the face or if they could leaveparticularly severe scars if left unsutured.
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When To Administer Antibiotics For Snake Bite In Dogs
If your dog has been bitten by a snake, you may wonder if you should administer antibiotics for snake bites in dogs. The answer to this depends on a number of factors, including the location of the bite and what symptoms are present.
If the snake bit your dog in an area where bacteria could become trapped, such as their ears or feet, then it might be worth administering antibiotics for snake bites in dogs immediately after being bitten by a rattlesnake. In addition to that scenario, other scenarios include:
- Your dog has a fever
- Your dog has redness or swelling at the site of the bite
- Your dog has had previous allergic reactions to antibiotics
Managing Human And Animal Bites
1.1.1 For people with a human or animal bite:
assess the type and severity of the bite, including what animal caused the bite, the site and depth of the wound, and whether it is infected
assess the risk of tetanus, rabies or a bloodborne viral infection and take appropriate action
manage the wound with irrigation and debridement as necessary
1.1.2 Seek specialist advice from a microbiologist for bites from a wild or exotic animal because the spectrum of bacteria involved may be different, and there may be a risk of other serious non-bacterial infections.
1.1.3 Consider seeking specialist advice from a microbiologist for domestic animal bites , that you are unfamiliar with.
For a short explanation of why the committee made these recommendations, see the rationale section on assessment.
For more details, see the evidence review.
Antibiotic prophylaxis for uninfected bites
1.1.4 Do not offer antibiotic prophylaxis to people with a human bite that has not broken the skin.
1.1.5 Offer antibiotic prophylaxis to people with a human bite that has broken the skin and drawn blood.
1.1.6 Consider antibiotic prophylaxis for people with a human bite that has broken the skin but not drawn blood if it:
1.1.7 Do not offer antibiotic prophylaxis to people with a cat bite that has not broken the skin.
Bites from a dog or other traditional pet
For more details, see the evidence review.
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Are Dog Cat Or Bat Bites Serious
Dog or cat bites are usually minor, but infections can occur if the skin is broken and bacteria from the saliva of the animal enter your bloodstream.
To avoid developing tetanus, seek medical advice immediately if you are bitten and the skin is broken. Tetanus is a serious bacterial infection that releases toxins into the blood, and it can be fatal. Your healthcare professional may recommend you have a tetanus booster injection.
Animal bites are a common cause of injury. Dog and cat bites are the most frequent, but any animal including pets, wild animals and humans can bite you.
You should avoid handling bats or flying foxes in Australia unless you are trained in their care.
If you have been, or think you may have been, bitten or scratched by a bat seek immediate medical attention.
What Sort Of Treatment Will Be Given To My Dog
Your veterinarian will determine what sort of treatment is necessary, based on the extent of the injuries, your dog’s general health, and the location of the wounds. The goal of treatment is to reduce the severity of any infection that develops. This will be accomplished by cleaning the wounds, removing any dead or severely damaged tissue, and potentially surgically closing the wounds if possible.
Antibiotics may be prescribed for wounds that have penetrated the skin depending on the location of the wound and the duration between bite time and presentation to your veterinarian. For minor injuries, or for wounds that must be left open to heal, your veterinarian may prescribe a topical antibiotic. If there is any doubt about skin penetration, your veterinarian may prescribe a broad spectrum antibiotic to lessen the chance that a serious infection will develop. The sooner antibiotics are begun after a bite injury the quicker the infection will be brought under control. Wounds that are treated within 6 hours of the injury have the best chance of healing without complications.
Small puncture wounds will usually be left open so that any infection can drain out. Lacerations will be sutured up, and temporary drains may be placed if the damage is extensive, or if there is a chance that fluid will build up in the area. Most lacerations will be ‘debrided‘ . In many cases, skin wounds will be enlarged to allow the underlying tissues to be thoroughly examined and cleaned.
Apply Pressure To The Bite Site
If the wound is actively bleeding, apply pressure with a clean cloth for several minutes to stop the blood flow. Ice wrapped in a cloth can be helpful if its availablethe cold temperature causes the blood vessels to contract, lessening the amount of blood exiting the wound. Applying ice will also help combat inflammation and discomfort.
For small wounds, a bandage is usually unnecessary. Large wounds or ones that continue to bleed can benefit from a light bandage. Apply a sterile non-stick pad to the wound, and then wrap it with gauze and/or vet wrap to hold the pad in place. A small adhesive bandage like a Band-Aid may work for some very small nicks.
Have A Vet Evaluate Dog Bite Wound
Seek immediate veterinary attention to evaluate the wound.Your vet will look to see how deep it is, judge how much dead space is involved and make recommendations for treatment. Dead space is created when the skin is pulled away from the underlying subcutaneous tissue creating a pocket of air between the skin and the underlying tissue. If the space is large, bacteria tend to grow creating an abscess. Typically one of two things will happen, your vet will clean the wound and prescribe antibiotics or if the wound is deep it may need a surgical drain.
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Working With Dogs In Pain
A tip: Whenever you are working with a dog that may be in pain, its wise to use a muzzle. Even the sweetest dog can bite if she is in pain. Muzzles are available at any pet supply store, and cloth or mesh muzzles are easy to store in a first aid kit. Practice putting the muzzle on your dog, using treats to reward her and make wearing it a positive experience. This will make it much easier to get the muzzle on in an emergency.