The Risk of Dog Bite Infection

A dog bite infection can present a significant health risk, far past the pain or discomfort of the actual wound.

Aggressive Dog

From time to time, dogs are known to bite or attack. It is a good idea to be very cautious when faced with an unknown or strange dog,  but a majority of the more than 4 million annual dog bites come from a dog we have seen before.

A bite results in infection about 10-15 percent of the time. Infections are caused by bacteria, and if left untreated can result in tetanus. In people with weakened immune systems, sepsis or meningitis may result if the wound is not cleaned thoroughly and monitored. Cleaning with water also reduces the chances of initial infection.

Another problem is that the bite is often on our hands, where we are exposed to more bacteria, and have a harder time warding off infection. The dog’s mouth may also transfer bacteria into the wound.

It’s important to see a doctor as a precautionary measure, even if you think it may not be necessary. Redness, swelling, warmth or pus are all signs of a dog bite infection.

More Signs of Dog Bite Infection:

• Loss of sensation around the bite
• Tenderness in the area of the bite
• Limited use of the finger or hand where the bite occurred
• Red streaks near the bite

More Serious Symptoms Include:

• Fever or chills
• Swollen lymph nodes
• Night sweats
• Fatigue
• Breathing difficulty
• Muscle weakness

Again, it is extremely important to seek medical care following a dog bite, especially when symptoms persist. The doctor will likely ask when you had your last tetanus vaccination. If you knew the animal that bit you, he might also ask when the dog was last vaccinated for rabies.

The best thing you can do is to take steps to reduce an attack from occurring in the first place.

Avoiding An Attack

Unfortunately, just about anyone who spends time outdoors is at some level of risk for an attack. There is a lot that can be done to prevent an attack, however. We believe that the best method for attack prevention, and lowering the risk of dog bite infection, is an audible dog deterrent such as Sound Defense.

Our products are ideal for sports enthusiasts and people with outdoor jobs, anyone who spends a significant amount of time outdoors. Make sure that you are protecting yourself with a thorough first line of defense.