22 May Dog Fight
Why do they happen?
There are numerous reasons why dog fights may occur – roaming dogs, entire/undesexed dogs fighting over females in season, territorial dogs are just a few examples – thus the importance of desexing, microchipping and providing adequate fencing around your property.
What do you do?
Obviously stopping the fight is important but protecting yourself and others is of utmost importance. Do not put yourself in a position to get bitten.
- Use a broom handle, a hose, or bucket of water to separate them.
It is imperative with any situation to stay calm and keep your pet calm while stabilising.
Dog fight wounds are usually much more extensive then the initial visual of the puncture wound thus it is vital to get your pet checked by a veterinarian.
Use a towel or clean cotton pad to compress any area of haemorrhage and if you cannot get to a vet immediately use saline or diluted salty water ( 1tsp in 600ml sterile water) to flush out the wounds that are especially contaminated however if bleeding heavily avoid flushing.
Wounds may require a thorough flushing using sterile saline, removal of contaminating matter and devitalised (dead) tissue, surgical repair of the wound, specialised wound dressings depending on the type of wound and medication such as antibiotics and pain relief.
What happens at the vet?
Dog bites crush the tissue underneath and can often separate muscle from skin etc and create dead space.
Your vet will examine the extent of the wounds, flush out any cavities and remove any contaminating debris and remove any dead or devitalised tissue that is present. if required the wounds will be surgically repaired and drains and/or specialised wound dressings placed.
Your pet will be given pain relief, anti-inflammatory medications and antibiotics.
It is extremely important to ensure dog bite wounds are treated appropriately as they have the potential to become septic which can be fatal.