What is an animal bite?
Animal bites include punctures, tearing wounds, crush injuries, or lacerations into the skin caused by the teeth of animals.
What are the symptoms?
Common symptoms are minor cuts, abrasions and scratches include redness, minor bleeding, and minor swelling.
What is the treatment?
It is important to visit a healthcare provider immediately after experiencing an animal bite to determine the severity and proper course of treatment. The incidence of infection and complications is very high or increased with animal bites. As a result, Take Care ClinicsSM treat minor animal bites and scratches only. Animal bites of the following nature cannot be treated at Take Care Clinics:
- Bites on the face, neck, ear, joints, hands, feet, genitalia
- Blood supply has been disrupted
- Any neurological deficit
- Human bites
- Monkey bites
- Bites from feral animals
Visit a Take Care Health Provider for evaluation of other minor animal bites. During evaluation, the healthcare provider will take into account many factors to determine the appropriate course of treatment. These factors include tetanus immunization status, risk of rabies exposure or other communicable disease, type of animal, amount of contamination to the wound, and amount of time elapsed between injury and treatment. Typical treatment of minor animal bites includes cleaning of the wound site and application of the necessary dressing/bandages, topical treatment, and consideration of antibiotics to reduce infection, promote proper healing and minimize scarring.