Treating Your Shih Tzu’s Wounds

Due to the curious nature of canines, dogs are likely to get cuts or lacerations from sharp objects such as tree branches, wires or from another dog’s bite. Regardless of the reason, you should be able to assess whether the wound will need needing immediate veterinary treatment or your home medication is already enough for it. To start with, there are two types of wounds – shallow and deep. Shallow wounds only involve breakage of the skin and the fatty or subcutaneous tissue underneath the skin. Usually, these wound are not heavily bleeding and pain is only observed when pressure is applied. Deep wounds, on the other hand already involve the blood vessels, muscles and nerves – painful and continuous bleeding is seen. When deep wounds are already more than 6 hours untreated, they are not suggested to be sutured because there is already high amount of bacteria that may get trapped underneath the skin and will lead to pus formation.

After determining whether the wound is shallow and deep, the next thing to do is clean your hands with soap and water and apply pressure on the wound. If it is deep, bring your dog immediately to the vet. Just make sure that the bleeding is not as heavily or better if it has already stopped. Continuous bleeding can lead to hypovolemic shock and can cause death in an individual due to extreme loss of blood. If you are dealing with a shallow wound, apply hydrogen peroxide and povidone iodine on the wound using a clean cotton or gauze. If you are dealing with a wound on the scrotum, do not apply povidone iodine and use only any antibacterial ointment. Apply these using “dubbing” motions where there is less friction and induce no trauma on the wound bed. You can apply any antiseptic ointment afterwards. Just make sure that the dog is not able to lick the medication and ingest it as this can cause toxicity and poisoning in dogs. You can place an e-collar or wrapped the wound in a gauze bandage.