Your dog approaches. He’s limping and bleeding. You see an open wound on his leg. Do you know what to do? Even minor wounds can lead to major problems for your dog if treated incorrectly, so it’s important that you see your vet immediately to determine the best course of action. The vets here at El Dorado Animal Hospital see dogs brought in all the time with major problems stemming from incorrect wound treatment. Some of the most common mistakes people make when treating dog wounds include:
Closing a Wound Without Cleaning
Puncture wounds, lacerations, and other trauma may force bacteria deep into the tissues. A contaminated wound that is more than a few hours old should never be closed without removal of all the contaminated or dead tissue first. In some cases, closing a wound without surgical debridement may result in more permanent damage than leaving the wound open to heal. To prevent further injury, let a vet examine your dog’s wounds before attempting to close the wound yourself.
Using a Styptic Stick or Powder to Stop Bleeding
Styptic sticks or powders are damaging to tissues. Deep or large wounds cannot be treated with these methods. Although the bleeding will stop, the wound becomes contaminated, infected and healing will be delayed.
Sealing the Wound with Neosporin
Neosporin is an effective antibiotic that can speed up the healing process and even cut down on skin and tissue scarring. Unfortunately, sealing your dog’s wound with gobs of Neosporin may lead to more serious health problems. Dogs (and cats) love to lick their wounds, and Neosporin isn’t designed to be ingested. Even if you do bandage over the affected area to prevent your dog from licking the topical antibiotic, Neosporin may also prevent the wound from healing which can lead to secondary infections.
Not Seeking Emergency Care
Even small wounds on the surface of the skin can hide a bigger problem underneath. Dog bite wounds especially can damage tissue underneath with only a small hole on the surface of the skin. Bring your four-legged friend to El Dorado Animal Hospital and let our vets and veterinary staff diagnose the full extent of the wound and provide immediate treatment. Attempting to treat a wound on your own without stabilizing and sedating your dog may cause additional pain and thrashing which can lead to further injuries.
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16765 East Parkview Avenue
Fountain Hills, AZ 85268
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