Dogs can be cute and cuddly companions, but they can also pose a safety risk. It is extremely important to remember a few basic safety principles when it comes to dealing with dogs and to seek medical care in the event of a dog bite.
First and foremost, children should not approach an unfamiliar dog.
It is essential for the parent to first ask the owner of the dog if it is okay for the child to pet them. Adult supervision when a child is around a dog is the safest option. A child should never approach a stray dog. Not all dogs will respond to an unexpected greeting in a positive way. It is also important to both approach and move away from dogs slowly to reduce the chance of startling the dog. Do not approach a dog who is eating or playing with a toy because dogs can be protective of their food/toys.
Even when we are cautious, unexpected dog bites can occur.
The first thing to do if someone is bit by a dog is to control the bleeding by applying direct pressure. Once the bleeding is controlled, clean the wound thoroughly with soap and water. Dog bites should be evaluated by a healthcare provider to determine the proper course of treatment. In some cases, bite wounds require closure with stitches. In others, the wound will be left open to heal. Dog bites carry a high risk of infection, and so antibiotics are often prescribed.
Additionally, if the bite was from a stray dog or from a dog whose vaccination status cannot be determined, rabies prophylaxis may be necessary. Dog owners should ensure that their dog stays up to date with all vaccines, including the rabies vaccine.
If your child has been bitten by a dog, our providers can help. Bring them to one of our 11 locations. Little Spurs Pediatric Urgent Care pediatric providers can evaluate your child’s injury and come up with a treatment plan. With multiple locations in Texas, we are open 7 days a week and see up to the age of 21 years old.
Little Spurs Pediatric Urgent Care opened in 2006 in San Antonio, Texas. With multiple locations in San Antonio and Dallas, they are open seven days a week with extended evening hours and see walk-in patients or through an online check-in system. They accept most commercial insurance and Medicaid plans. More information about Little Spurs Pediatric Urgent Care can be found at www.littlespurspedi.com.