Dog Friendly Tips: Animal Bites
Animal bites and venomous snake or insect bites need very different treatment, so we shall consider them separately.
It is important to determine the kind of bite to be treated. The bite of a dog or cat, or even that of a rat, can usually be distinguished by the number of teeth marks.
When a large dog attacks a dog, if one toothmark is found, three others can nearly always be located. The distance between these skin punctures, as well as their size, gives some idea of the size of the attacker.
Little dogs sometimes open their mouths wide and leave impressions of their upper and lower canine teeth perhaps four inches apart, but the distance between the two upper canines will still be small.
Large dogs may happen to get hold with only a small nip, but the distance between their upper canines may be as much as three inches in some breeds.
Because of their size and strength, large dogs inflict greater damage than small dogs.
Ordinarily a dog attacking another dog does not simply attack, hold on, and squeeze; it shakes its head and thus drive sits fangs deeper. These teeth wounds can be cleaned by shaving the hair away and filling them with antiseptic from an inserted medicine dropper.
The attacker may have freed the skin from the underlying connective tissue over a large area. In such cases your veterinarian will flush this area clean and bind it down and perhaps apply a drain for few days.
Cat bites on dogs often become seriously infected. The skin should not be allowed to heal quickly over them.
If infected, the punctures become large abscesses which burst, carrying with them large areas of skin which has been killed in the process of abscess formation.
A bite that has been allowed to abscess takes much longer to heal than a properly treated bite, and the new skin which eventually covers the open area will scar and never have hair.
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