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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16888
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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my dog has been biten by a squirrel should he see a vet and

Resolved Question:

my dog has been biten by a squirrel should he see a vet and is there any health risks for him
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is***** and I have over 25 years of experience as a veterinarian.
I'm so sorry to hear that Patch was attacked and bitten by a squirrel.
Being in the UK, Rabies luckily is not a concern. The concern is primarily a secondary bacterial infection from the bite. Treatment for your fellow will depend upon the number of wounds, how deep they are and whether they are scratch wounds or deep puncture wounds.
Unfortunately with bite wounds, especially when they are puncture wounds, most of the damage is deep in tissue where we cannot see and bacteria from the squirrel's mouth can be injected deep into his tissues.
Ideally bite wounds that are deep puncture wounds should be flushed out and surgically debrided as soon as possible and we would start systemic antibiotics within 12 hours of the bites. If he has puncture wounds I highly recommend that you have him seen today to at least get started on some broad spectrum antibiotics.
If they appear to be more scratch type wounds I recommend that you shave the hair around the bites to stop bacteria from wicking in, and warm compress the areas for 10 minutes twice daily to encourage drainage while the wounds are healing. Then clean the area with a dilute solution of antibacterial liquid hand soap and warm water. I do not recommend antibacterial ointment over the wounds, just around the edges of them. We like puncture wounds to heal from the inside out so that infection drains out rather then being walled in by ointment or skin that heals too quickly.
If there is a lot of swelling around the bites, or he won't let you clean them properly then he needs a veterinary visit to get them cleaned and to start pain medication and antibiotics.
Please let me know if you have any further questions.
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