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Animal Attacks in Dogs

By: PetPlace Veterinarians

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Animal attacks can be frightening and make the owner feel helpless. When two animals are embroiled in a battle, it can be difficult to separate them without injuring yourself. Avoid the desire to jump between the animals and pull them apart. This usually results in serious injury. If one of the animals is on a leash, pull the leashed animal and, hopefully, the other animal will stop. Consult your veterinarian, animal behaviorist or dog trainer for other suggestions on how to separate a fight. Sometimes, you may not be able to do anything until the fight is over.

After the fight has ended, your pet will need to be examined thoroughly by your veterinarian. Even though you may only notice small minor puncture wounds, serious tissue damage could have occurred just below the surface.

Veterinary Care

Your veterinarian will need to know what type of animal caused the injury, although this is not always known. Most fights are dog to dog, cat to cat or dog to cat. Wild animals may be involved, especially if they feel threatened or are attacked. Unprovoked attacks by wild animals are rare.

Animal attacks are usually painful so your veterinarian will administer pain medications.

Wounds are typically shaved and cleaned. Animal injuries are prone to infections so your veterinarian will also prescribe antibiotics.

Based on the injuries, various additional treatments may be needed. Your pet may require suturing or even major abdominal surgery in the case of organ damage, abdominal penetration or peritonitis.

In some cases, a rabies vaccine booster may be given if there is a possible threat of contracting this virus.

Home Care

Administer all medications as prescribed. Contact your veterinarian immediately if you are having difficulty medicating your pet. Improper home care is the primary reason for treatment failure.

Infection rate is high in bite wounds so make sure you continue to give antibiotics as prescribed, even if your pet appears to be healing.

As your pet is healing, keep him/her indoors and clean. During the warm seasons, flies can become attracted to skin wounds and maggots can develop if the wounds are not properly cared for.

Preventative Care

Keeping your cat indoors and leash walking your dog can help prevent animal attacks. Unfortunately, not everyone follows these suggestions. Sometimes, animal attacks cannot be prevented.

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