It’s common in everyday life, that an animal could injure itself, especially if it is free to play and run like cats and dogs, or like horses because of little accidents in the stable. In these cases is very important to know how to operate a first aid to safeguard the animal health.
Basically we have 2 kind of wounds that can affect our furry friends
• Stab wounds
• Puncture wounds
Stab wounds are easier to see, they are enlongated and look like an almond (1).
Puncture wounds are more dangerous, caused by a blunt instrument or by a bite of another animal, the problem is that we can’t know how much deep is the wound and if other tissues or organs are damaged. The better thing to do is to contact the Veterinary to ensure about the real condition of our animal. If we have a surface wound, instead, we can act for a first aid. Good practice, is to keep on hand a first-aid-kit with the necessary to disinfect and bandage.
Keep on mind that a hurt animal is suffering and that we can’t predict its reactions, so it’s really important to stay safe, it would be better ask an help, another person that can hold and calm the animal, if it is a dog, can be a good idea to use a muzzle to prevent a dog bite, and to avoid that it licks the wound(2), we need to remember that the wound can get infect, so use latex gloves.
We have to wash and clean gently the wound, and the water must not touch directly the injury (3); we can also shave the fur around the wound, to keep the dameged area clean.
Keep on mind that for more serious injuries as trauma from road accidents, penetrating injuries or for every other injury we can’t handle, we have to talk with a veterinary, and that our first aid cannot replace medical cure from qualified personnel.