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How to Treat a Dog Bite

July 31, 2014

According to the Centers for Disease Control, dogs bite over 4 million Americans very year. Approximately 20 percent of dog bites causes an injury that warrants medical attention. Children between the ages of five and nine are more likely to be bitten by dogs that any other age group. Due to their small stature, kids are more likely to be injured from a dog bite than adults.

If you or a loved one has sustained a dog bite injury due to the negligence of another, you may have financial and legal recourse. Contact an experienced dog bite injury lawyer today to explore your legal options.

For additional information about dog bite legal claims, fill out the Free Case Review form on this page.


Dog Bite Treatment

Although stray dogs can bite people, the majority of dog bite injuries are caused by a canine that the victims knows, which could be the family pet or the neighbor’s dog.


Home Treatments

If a dog bites you or your loved one, you can provide first aid treatment at your home. You should take the following steps when treating a dog bite wound:

  • Place a clean towel over the wound to stop the bleeding.
  • Keep the injury elevated.
  • Wash the bite carefully with soap and warm water. You want to remove as much dirt and saliva as you possibly can; the animal’s saliva is contaminated with bacteria.
  • If possible, clean the wound with an antiseptic solution.
  • Apply antibiotic ointment to the wound; you will need to re-apply the ointment every day until the injury has healed.
  • Cover the wound with a sterile bandage.


Dog bite victims should seek medical attention if:

  • They were bitten by an unfamiliar dog or a stray.
  • You can’t stop the injury from bleeding
  • The wound looks infected.

Additionally, certain demographics are highly susceptible to infections and should seek dog bite treatment from a healthcare professional. These demographics include:

  • Adults over the age of 50
  • Individuals who have diabetes, circulatory problems, liver disease or HIV/AIDS
  • Anyone who is taking chemotherapy or long-term steroids
  • Individuals who have had mastectomy or organ transplant
  • Anyone who has had their spleen removed


Professional Dog Bite Medical Treatment

When you seek professional medical treatment for a dog bite injury, the doctor will first examine the injury to make sure that there hasn’t been any damage to the tendons, bones, nerves or muscles. Next the physician will thoroughly clean the wound of any bacteria or dirt. If necessary, the physician will remove dead tissues from the wound.

Occasionally, a doctor will use sutures to close the wound; however, this practice is debatable. Suturing the wound can reduce the amount of scarring, but it also increases a victim’s chances of getting an infection. Typically, a doctor will suture the injury if it is located on the face to reduce the chances of having a visible scar. Some deep wounds may require plastic surgery to repair the damage.

Your physician will also take measure to prevent infections. While it is rare for dogs in the Unites States to have rabies, if the dog is a stray or tests positive for rabies, the doctor will give you a rabies vaccine. Additionally, your physician may give you a tetanus shot, if you haven’t has one in a while.

The doctor may prescribe you to take antibiotics to prevent your injury from becoming infected.


Contact a Mobile Dog Bite Lawyer

If you or a loved one has suffered a dog bite due to a pet owner’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and other damages. Contact a knowledgeable dog bite lawyer to schedule a legal consultation. After reviewing your claim, a lawyer will advise you on the best legal action to pursue.

The attorneys at the Citrin Law Firm are available to assist dog bite injury victims in Mobile, Baldwin County and the surrounding communities. The law firm has helped numerous clients receive the maximum compensation that they deserved.

To receive a free case evaluation, fill out the contact form on this page.


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