Each year millions of people in the United States, most of them are children,
are bitten by animals. Most animal bites are from dogs; cats are the second most
bites reported. However, the risk of infection from a cat bite is much higher than that
from a dog bite. Most bites occur on the fingers and hands, but children may also be bitten
around the head, face and neck area.
The major concern we have from animal bites is the possibility of rabies. Because most pets
in the U.S. are vaccinated, most cases of rabies are the result of bites from wild animals such as
a skunk, bat or raccoon. No matter what animal that bite comes from, if it is not your own pet,
you should call your local animal control and the police department.
Rabies is a disease that affects only mammals ( such as, raccoons, bats, dogs, horses and humans).
It is causes by a virus that attacks the central nervous system. With out treatment is is 100 percent
fatal. If detected early there is a series of highly effective vaccinations that can be given. That is why
it is extremely important for you to notify the proper authorities if anyone has been bitten. Play it safe
and let a medical doctor examine any bite area.
Try following some of these suggestions to prevent animal bites.
* Do not try to separate fighting animals.
* Avoid animals that appear sick or act strange. Call animal control.
* Leave animals, even pets you know, alone while they are eating or sleeping.
* Keep pets on a leash when out in public.
* Never leave a young child alone with any animal. Don't allow children to tease
animals, wave sticks at them, throw anything at them or pull their tail.
* Be sure your pet is Vaccinated. If unsure, please visit your vet.
* Do not approach or play with any kind of wild animal.
* Tech children not to pet any strange or unknown animal with out first asking
permission of the pets owner.
Summer is the time that many children and animals are outside enjoying play.
Education of our children and yes even us adults is the key to preventing the dangers
that come with a animal bite. Rabies is not our only concern. Infections are actually a
higher risk, again due to most pets having rabies shots. If you are bitten you will need to
watch for signs of infection as your doctor will advise you when you seek treatment.
Signs of infection are, warmth around the wound, swelling, pain, a pus discharge and or
redness around the bite marks. If you are bitten clean the area with soap and water. Use
an antiseptic such as hydrogen peroxide or alcohol. And seek your doctors attention as soon