Abrasions

April 12, 2012

Cause

Because the dog’s skin is protected by its fur abrasions are not very common in dogs.

Skin abrasions occur when the skin has been worn away, but the tissue underneath has not been disturbed. The area of this type of abrasion is usually not larger than an inch or two.

If the the tissue beneath the skin has been disturbed or the area of the abrasion is larger than two inches you should seek professional help from a veterinarian.

Treatment – Skin Abrasions

Treating minor abrasions is relatively straight forward and can be done from home.

To treat skin abrasions you should make sure your hands and wrists are clean. Wash your hands and wrists thoroughly with soap before you begin treating the wound. If you do not, you risk contaminating it and it may become infected.

Clip or shave unwanted hair around the wound. If hair gets into the wound you also risk contamination.

Flush the wound with warm water to remove any dirt and debris. If running water is not available carefully remove any foreign objects and debris by hand. Then wash the wound gently and thoroughly using warm water and soap. Use a soft clean cloth to do this.

Apply an antiseptic to the abraded area. Antiseptics come in many flavors including creams, solutions, powders and scrubs. Some of the more commonly used are Chlorhexidin, Betadine, Neosporin and Bacitracin. Some antiseptics and antibiotics can be purchased over the counter without the need for a prescription. Use according to the instructions on the packaging. If you are not sure. Contact your vet for advice.

After applying the antiseptic. Make sure the dog does not lick it off. Keep an eye on the dog while the antiseptic soaks into the skin and provide a distractation if necessary. Some possible distractions include light play, petting and feeding.

Leave the abrasion unbandaged, allowing it to breathe. This also lets you observe and clean it more easily. If you are dealing with a large abrasion or if it is located on the the dogs foot or in another exposed area where it may get knocked or soiled. Use a bandage or a non-stick wound dressing.

Inspect the wound daily until it has healed. While inspecting the wound you should look for signs of discomfort and if the abrasion spreads, discarge pus or the area around it becomes distended, sore, red or hot. You should seek medical advice from a veterinarian.

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