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Properly treat bite injuries in dogs

Biting incidents among dogs are usually predictable, but as a rule a dispute among conspecifics goes off lightly. But when the dog has been bitten by another dog, many dog ​​owners are overwhelmed with the situation at first. The dog is injured and bleeding. Now is the time to keep a cool head.

Veterinary treatment can be quite expensive. You should therefore talk to the owner of the other dog about a possible claim settlement and ask him for his address.

First aid for bite injuries

During the fight and shortly afterwards, the dogs are flooded with stress hormones, which can suppress the sensation of pain. Since the dog shows hardly any pain symptoms, injuries can be overlooked if one does not look for them specifically.

If your dog is actually injured, you should proceed as follows for first aid:

  • Heavy bleeding is stopped with a pressure bandage. A pack of paper handkerchiefs and a cloth can serve as an emergency bandage.
  • Open wounds are cleaned superficially and, if possible, rinsed with clean water. To protect the wound, it should be covered with a bandage.

The 3 most important steps after bite injuries:

  • Clarify claims settlement with the owner of the other dog; Exchange address and telephone number.
  • Check dog for injuries, flush open wounds with water and cover with bandages; apply a pressure bandage in the event of heavy bleeding.
  • Go to the vet.
  • This is how you can tell how bad a bite injury is

    From the outside, bites often look more harmless than they are. Even if it is so small and inconspicuous, you should always have a bite wound examined by the vet, because the teeth of the opponent always inject bacteria into the wound when they bite.

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    Even if the wound closes quickly, inflammation can develop in and under the skin. Many serious injuries cannot be seen from the outside. If they are not discovered in time, serious and even life-threatening complications can occur hours or even days after the brawl.

    The sooner a wound is treated professionally, the better the chances of a quick and uncomplicated healing. It is best to bring the dog to the vet or emergency veterinary service immediately after the fight.

    Symptoms of pain after a bite injury

    On the way to the vet, the amount of stress hormones in the dog’s blood decreases and with it their analgesic effect. Often the dogs only now show clear symptoms of pain, for example:

    • Moan
    • Whine
    • Panting
    • Paralyze
    • Licking the bite site

    Caution is advised when dealing with the animal, because the combination of pain, stress and fear can make it highly aggressive. In this situation, even your favorite dog can suddenly snap.

    Bite wounds must always be treated by a veterinarian. © stock.adobe.com/BetterPhoto

    This is how a bite wound in a dog heals

    Wounds heal the fastest when they can be sewn, stapled or glued directly. However, this is only possible if the wound is fresh. This means that the wound must not be older than six hours at the most.

    Large wounds and wounds with stubborn infections usually have to heal openly under a bandage. Healing is much slower here. In the healing phase there is also a high risk of complications, for example due to infections or renewed injury to the sensitive healing tissue.

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    Faster healing of bite injuries with NPWT

    A new procedure is the “Negative Pressure Wound Therapy (NPWT)”, in German “Unterdruck-Wundtherapie”. In NPWT, a pump is used to create suction on the wound area under the tight bandage. NPWT dressings can only be applied under anesthesia. In order for them to sit firmly and securely, they must be sutured tightly to the skin.

    Advantages of negative pressure wound therapy:

    • accelerates healing,
    • reduces the risk of complications,
    • ensures that the dog recovers much faster.

    © A heart for animals Media