Bite Wounds: There’s More Than Meets The Eye

One of the scariest things a pet owner could witness is that of their dog being attacked by another dog. Not only are you worried about your dog’s life, but the accident itself can be very traumatic to witness. What can you do to prevent these sort of incidents and what should you do if this happens to your dog?

Preventing Dog Bites

Preventing dog attacks can greatly reduce the likelihood of these scenarios taking place. The majority of dog attacks that we see are either while one or both dogs are off leash, or dogs within the same house fighting over property such as toys, food, or the couch.

Keeping your dog on a leash while walking can greatly reduce the likelihood of attacking or being attacked. Having control of your dog through basic commands can help. Being able to direct and control your dog away from danger could help protect it from an attack.

General knowledge of your neighborhood. If you know there are certain dogs roaming or continually not under owner control, keeping your pet within a fenced yard or walking in a different neighborhood would protect it from those potential threats. Dogs that are constantly wandering the neighborhood puts you and your pet at risk.

Introducing a new dog to your household properly is crucial. Make sure you monitor its behavior and how it interacts with other animals in the home. Consider temperament testing it with different scenarios such as when eating, with different toys, and when around specific people.

Seek training for your pet. If your dog is showing signs of aggression, consider consulting and visiting with a trainer. A trainer can help your dog understand basic commands and assure it is a good member of society.

What To Do If Your Is Dog Attacked

If your dog gets attacked, it is imperative that you seek veterinary attention. The attack warrants an emergency visit to the veterinarian if your dog has significant wounds, is bleeding profusely, or is unable to move well.

The wounds need to be tended to and cleaned appropriately. Many people think that using hydrogen peroxide will kill the bacteria and the wound will be just fine. Unfortunately, hydrogen peroxide can sometimes slow healing because it can damage the cells crucial in the healing process. Veterinary clinics have the appropriate solutions such as betadine or chlorohexidine to clean the wounds with. Major wounds often require surgical correction so that underlying muscles, tendons and ligaments can be examined for extensive damage requiring repair.

What some people do not know about bite wounds is that they may look harmless at first, but do not realize the harm if left untreated. Most bite wounds if left untreated can result in local infection, abscess, local tissue death or possibly wide spread infection throughout the body. All bite wounds need to be tended to by a veterinarian. They will then be able to determine the extent of the wound and what treatment, including antibiotics, might be necessary.

Final Thoughts

Though bite wounds in dogs cannot be completely avoided there are ways to help reduce their likelihood. If a bite wound unfortunately occurs remember no matter how minor it looks, it is in your pets’ best interest to seek veterinary attention in a timely manner. See our list of recommended after-hour emergency clinics below.

IndyVet Emergency & Specialty Hospital
5425 Victory Dr
Indianapolis, IN 46203

Veterinary Specialty & Emergency Care South
4625 East Stop 11 Road
Indianapolis, IN 46237

VCA Advanced Veterinary Care Center
7712 Crosspoint Commons
Fishers, IN, 46038