The Veterinary Profession Is Full of Love

What To Do If Your Dog Is Attacked

You do your best to keep your pet safe and out of trouble. Unfortunately, you can't control other animals. Wild animals are unpredictable, and they can badly harm pets. Even other people's pets can cause significant damage. If your dog is attacked by another dog or a wild animal, you'll need to take quick action to help them. Here are four things you should do if your dog is attacked:

1. Get your dog to a safe location.

The first thing you need to do is get your pet to safety. If the animal that attacked them is still nearby, you should pick your dog up and quickly carry them away. Make sure you don't jostle your dog's injuries in the process. If possible, use a jacket, towel, or blanket to pick up your dog. The material will help you staunch any bleeding, and it will also protect your hands and arms. Even very well-behaved dogs may bite when they're scared and in pain.

2. Take your dog to the veterinarian.

After your dog has been attacked by another animal, you should take them to a veterinarian clinic right away. Even if your dog seems fine, it's best to have a vet assess the full extent of their injuries. Your dog may have internal damage that isn't visible without X-rays. Your dog's vet will carefully and thoroughly clean any wounds your pet has sustained. If your pet is agitated, the veterinarian may give them a sedative to keep them calm. This will make the procedure safer and more comfortable.

3. Consent to the proposed treatment plan.

If your dog was not badly injured, the vet may simply clean their wounds. More severe lacerations may require stitches. The worst animal attacks can create internal damage that needs to be surgically repaired. Your dog's vet will propose a treatment plan based on their diagnosis. You'll need to consent to these services and their attendant costs before the vet can progress with treatment. If you're worried about the cost of surgery, the vet may be able to offer you the option of a payment plan.

4. Continue to administer prescribed medication.

Your dog's veterinarian will prescribe medication to prevent infection and encourage healing. Your dog will need to take antibiotics. Depending on the severity of their injury, they may also need to take painkillers initially. Make sure to give your dog their medication on schedule. Many owners have luck getting their dog to take pills when the medication is hidden in food. Continue giving your dog their antibiotics until they have finished the entire course. Discontinuing medication early can create more antibiotic-resistant strains of infection.