WOUNDS/LACERATIONS

by Home Vet Bag

What Happens?

  • Pet can get wounds or lacerations (cuts) for many reasons
    • Dog/Cat bites
    • Hit by car
    • Barbed wire fences
    • Paw pad injuries
  • One of the biggest concerns with wounds is the potential for them to develop infection.
  • Many wounds can be hidden by fur and can appear days later as discharge from infection

 

What Does It Look Like?

  • Wounds can present as punctures, abrasions, or lacerations
  • They can be superficial and only affect the outer layer of skin or they can be deep and be through the skin.
  • If allowed to become infected, they can also have a purulent discharge (pus).

 

What Do You Do?

  • The first step is to be safe and muzzle your pet to prevent unintentional biting due to pain.
  • Next, it is important to shave the fur over the wounds and the surrounding area to assess the extent of the injuries
  • Deep wounds that are through the skin and into the flesh need to be sutured by a veterinarian within 2 to 3 hours after the incident.
  • Superficial wounds can be managed at home 
  • There are two aspects of wound management
    • Initial 
      • Use betadine scrub to clean wound after shaving
      • Hydrogen peroxide can be used, but betadine is better
      • Once dried, apply antibiotic ointment
      • Apply bandage if bleeding is present, but it is better to leave bandage off if possible and use medical collar to prevent licking
    • Maintenance 
      • Use a clean, wet washcloth to remove any discharge or debris
      • Re-apply antibiotic ointment
      • Change bandage if present
      • Hydrotherapy (spraying wound with water from kitchen or bath sprayer for 10-15 min) can speed healing time significantly
      • Do NOT apply hydrogen peroxide after initial use - it can actually slow down healing