The Complete 5-Step Guide on What To Do If You’ve Been Bitten By a Dog

While most of us have a heart for animals, any animal, tame or feral, can potentially pose a risk. In fact, according to Dogs Bite, acute damage victims face after a severe dog attack costs anywhere from $250,000 to a million dollars for various treatments.

Apart from general treatment to ensure the bite doesn’t become infected or affect other parts of the body, reconstructive surgery may be required. These may include skin grafts, tissue expansion, or scar diminishment. But these aren’t treatments that can usually be done in a few hours or days; they may take years from start to finish.

The Complete 5-Step Guide on What To Do If You've Been Bitten By a Dog

After being bitten by a dog, it’s important to take certain steps to ensure you heal properly and can get compensated for expensive injuries if applicable. Consider the latter:

  1. Apply pressure to your wound.

One of the most important things after getting bitten by a dog is to apply pressure to the place of injury. By pressing on the open wound, this may trigger bleeding if it isn’t already. As a result, this can help flush out bacteria, and in turn, reduce the risk of infection.

If your wound is already bleeding prior to applying pressure, adding pressure can help inhibit too much blood from escaping your body at once.

  1. Clean the injury with soap and water.

The truth is, you have no idea where a dog’s mouth has been. Chances are, you might not even know if the dog has a contagious infection or disease that may transfer to you. Apart from that, having an open wound alone, regardless of the cause, can easily collect dirt and germs that may be of harm to you.

That said, wash your wound well with soap and warm water. Pat dry afterwards.

  1. Apply ointment or antibiotic cream, and bandage your wound.

Right after cleaning your wound, it’s important to protect it from further damage to ensure it has a speedy recovery process. Thus, it’s important to apply ointment or antibiotic cream to the wound before bandaging it up. It’s also critical to occasionally change your bandage. Otherwise, old bandages may encourage infection and inhibit healing, according to IPPF.

  1. Pay close attention to your wound, and go to the doctor if necessary.

Make sure to keep an eye on your bite until it fully heals. Notice any changes that occur. If your bite is severe, deep, infected, getting worse or has stagnant recovery, or doesn’t stop bleeding, it’s critical that you get to the doctor as soon as you can.

A severe, worsening, or stagnant wound can not only indicate the potential for further damage, but it may also be an indicator that you have diabetes, anemia, or another condition that prevents your body from healing as quickly as it needs to. As much as you may want to refrain from going to the doctor and receiving treatment, it can potentially save your life.

  1. Reach out to a personal injury lawyer.

The more severe the wound, the more critical it is to reach out for legal help. Without compensation for your injuries, you may not only suffer physically and emotionally but medically and financially. Take your injury seriously, and get the medical help you need, even if it means having the owner of the dog rightfully pay for it.

Schedule a consultation with a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to see if you qualify for potential compensation.


Because of the many problems getting bitten a dog can possess – pain, injury, nerve damage, emotional distress, permanent aesthetic alteration –, it’s critical to do everything in your power to do what’s best for you. Sometimes part of that is attempting to receive legal compensation for your injuries. You’ve already suffered; don’t let your wallet and health continue to suffer too.

Thanks for stopping by today, I hope you have found this post useful.

You can check out my health section here for related content.

rachel bustin

*This is a guest post

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