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Animal bite


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Infographic re: animal bites

Published in: Law
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Animal bite

  1. 1. ASSESSING THE SEVERITY OF THE BITE • Once you’re safely away from the animal, wash the wound gently with soap and water. • Use a clean towel to apply pressure to the wound, then apply a clean bandage. • If the bite is on your hand or arm, elevate it above your heart to prevent infection and swelling. • After 15 minutes of consistent pressure, check the wound. If it is still bleeding, seek medical attention. • If the animal that bit you appears to be wild or you’re unsure of its vaccination status, see a doctor as soon as possible. • People with conditions that weaken their immune systems should receive medical attention as soon as possible. • Swelling, fever, redness and pus are all signs of possible infection. See your doctor right away if you notice any of these symptoms after you’re bitten. TREATMENT OPTIONS • Always treat animal bites as soon as you are able to safely. • If the puncture wounds are deep or if there is tearing of the skin, you may need to seek emergency care. • All wounds should be cleaned immediately with soap and water. • Apply an antibiotic cream to the site before bandaging. • If the site appears to be infected, your doctor might prescribe antibiotics. • It’s possible you will need to receive a tetanus booster shot if your last vaccination was more than five years ago. THE AFTERMATH • If the animal appears to be wild or a stray, contact animal control. • If the animal can be found, it will be tested for rabies. • Depending on the results of the test or if the animal cannot be found, your doctor might recommend you receive rabies shots. • If a domesticated animal has bitten you, you should take down as much information as you can about the owner. You may want to consider taking legal action if your injuries require extensive medical attention. PROPERLY REACTING TO AN ANIMAL BITE Below are tips for actions to take if you are bitten by an animal.