Although animal bites may not sound dangerous, they are a common cause of injury. Most commonly these bites occur from dogs, although cats and other pets can also inflict serious harm. A bite from any animal should be taken seriously, as bacteria such as Pasteurella and Staphylococcus can quickly infect a wound. Infection can lead to hospitalization or even death if left untreated, so it’s important to seek medical attention immediately after an animal bite occurs. Some symptoms of infection include redness, swelling, fever and general ill feeling. The wound may also become warm or feel like it is burning – both signs that you should get treatment fast. Visit a doctor or emergency room for antibiotics and advice about how to treat your wound properly at home.
If you or someone else is injured by an animal (like a dog or a cat), call 911 immediately. The animal might be carrying rabies and need emergency treatment. You might not know it, but most states require people who are bitten by animals to get rabies shots. So if you’re not sure whether you were bitten, it’s better to play it safe and call 911 than make yourself look foolish when no one believes that you were attacked by a cat.
You should head straight for an emergency room if you have been bitten by a dog, cat or wild animal. Dog bites account for 30% of emergency-room visits related to animal bites. In children younger than 5 years old, these are a leading cause of injury-related hospital admissions. Bites can cause severe injuries and even death, especially if they’re from animals carrying diseases such as rabies. If you’ve been bitten by an unfamiliar dog (including stray dogs), it is important that you get medical attention right away because up to 70% of all dogs carry rabies in India, so your chances of contracting it are higher than one might think.