Bitten by a dog. What should I do?

I was working at the car vallet centre today and I made the terrible mistake of stroking a cute little squat hound looking thing that belonged to the owner. I’ve never had a dog bite me before, and it was a weak bite to be honest. It barely punctured the skin, but I pulled my hand away from its mouth as it bit, resulting in some light bruising and scratching which is slightly bleeding.
I figure I haven’t had a tetanus injection since I can remember, at least 15 years anyway, as much as I can fathom.
So aside from keeping my hands away from the owner’s dog in future, is there a set of typical precautions I should follow in response to this bite? I’m thinking injections, but which ones?

I don’t know the dog’s history, and I couldn’t be bothered to ask in case the owner doesn’t know the specifics either.
As far as I know its a rescued dog from the street, so I’m guessing it could have anything as far as anyone knows.

It was my mistake really as I had entered its private space without realising. Still, bloody thing could have at least given me a growl and a warning sign before accepting some stroking before lunging for my hand.
I was stroking the owner’s recent rescue which was adorable and was loving the affection. It was after a while the second one came up and I assumed it wanted the same thing. Perhaps it was jealous as the new dog was having a good pet…??

This only happened several hours ago, in case the time frame is relevant.

Tetanus and a thorough cleaning. Tetanus should be mandatory for you in any case, as you’re no doubt under cars a lot and grazing your knuckles, etc – tetanus can also be contracted from soil. Other than that, I wouldn’t worry. Just slop a bit of iodine on it every day until it scabs over.

Thanks Sandman.
I’ll probably pop over to the local hospital in the morning if that isn’t too late.

[quote=“sulavaca”]Thanks Sandman.
I’ll probably pop over to the local hospital in the morning if that isn’t too late.[/quote]
I got bitten a few weeks ago – enough to draw blood in three or four places, with some nasty bruising – but didn’t go for a tetanus shot. Just cleaned it for ages under as hot water as I could bear, using an actual scrubbing brush (not entirely pain-free!) and then slopped alcohol over it, then slopped iodine into it. Repeat the alcohol and iodine for a couple of days and it was OK.

I have already been introducing alcohol for the past thirty minutes. I’ll probably be done in another couple of hours or so. I’m not sure about the iodine though. Does that need a twist of lemon?

Ha ha. And don’t forget to sprinkle plenty of salt into the wound. Work it right the way in there.

Taiwan is supposed to be rabies free, but considering the 100% fatality rate, and the horrible nature of the disease, I’d be demanding rabies shots.

Do they not take that so seriously here? I see a hell of a lot of bats around.

Iv been bitten twice by dogs in Taiwan (all neighbors dogs) and im still alive. Didnt get any rabies shots. As I understand it, they are quite big shots and shot in your stomach. Not something fun.

But see a doc tho. I did immediately after the first bite. Course I was a kid and my grandpa was a doc, so that was easy. The second bite wasnt that serious, just cleaned it up.

Its easy to forget that DOGS BITE (and both occasions without any warning).

[quote=“Lil’ Slugger”]Taiwan is supposed to be rabies free, but considering the 100% fatality rate, and the horrible nature of the disease, I’d be demanding rabies shots.

Do they not take that so seriously here? I see a hell of a lot of bats around.[/quote]
They don’t have rabies shots here. I may be mistaken, but definitely not in Adventist. Hospitals don’t stock em. Me thinks You have to go to HK for Rabies shots if you have to. Atleast that’s what was told to us.

I am sorry for the bite OP. Just keep tabs on the dog and if it dies for whatever reason in the next few months, you should go take the rabies shots (as a precaution), but if all is fine and dandy, then like sandman says, a good scrub and keeping the wound clean would be fine.

[quote]Rabies
[/quote]
cdc.gov.tw/content.asp?CuItem=7568

I’ve been bitten countless times and never done more than wash the site. But then I’m the roughy-toughy type.

Tetanus should only really be necessary for deep wounds.

If the dog is living in a garage and eating dog kibble, it’s bite is probably not much dirtier than that of a human. If you do a very thorough job disinfecting any wound immediately after it is sustained, and regularly thereafter, the likelihood of it ever developing into something serious is probably slim to none.

this might be a bit late, but a Tetnus shot must be given within 24 hours of the bite (injury) to have any effect and then the shot lasts for 5 years.

I was told 72 hours, but I could have been given the wrong information.

Probably cleaner. :smiley:

Bite back?

I would have, but I couldn’t even bend down that far. I’m off to the hospital now. A bit more bruised than yesterday.

I had my injection. I followed it up with a few beers. At least I’m fairly sure that’s what the doctor would have ordered if I’d asked him anyway.

I have antibiotics to start this evening and some cream for the little, tiny scratches I have and some painkillers, which are for the…erm…sort of bruise, which I can’t actually see, but I know is there when I use any light force from my thumb.

I’m sure its all a complete overreaction really, to what seems a minor issue from all I can tell.

Thanks for the advice guys.

One thing I couldn’t understand though. I asked the doc how often I should have the tetanus jab and he says “if you suffer heavy wounds, then once every five years, and light wounds every seven.”
None of that makes any sense to me.
Does anyone understand what he is talking about?

To be honest I couldn’t be bothered asking him, as I often end up in these fifteen minute conversations which always result in no more understanding than which I went in with in the first place. I’m sure any long term-ers know what I’m talking about.

[quote=“Lil’ Slugger”]Taiwan is supposed to be rabies free, but considering the 100% fatality rate, and the horrible nature of the disease, I’d be demanding rabies shots.

Do they not take that so seriously here? I see a hell of a lot of bats around.[/quote]

Just because a virus exists frequently in a type of animal doesn’t mean that there is a universal risk of the virus being present in that animal regardless of where you encounter it.

As there is no rabies in Taiwan, you are just about as likely to catch rabies after a Taiwanese dog bite as you are to have AIDS after a Taiwanese monkey bites you.

That dog is not a “wild animal”, something mysterious whose bite should cause such disproportionate fear. Dogs here generally live in a human household, drink tap water, eat kibble, and sleep in the house. They don’t really engage in particularly risky activities (eating carrion, etc.)

[quote=“sulavaca”]I had my injection. I followed it up with a few beers. At least I’m fairly sure that’s what the doctor would have ordered if I’d asked him anyway.

I have antibiotics to start this evening and some cream for the little, tiny scratches I have and some painkillers, which are for the…erm…sort of bruise, which I can’t actually see, but I know is there when I use any light force from my thumb.

I’m sure its all a complete overreaction really, to what seems a minor issue from all I can tell.

Thanks for the advice guys.

One thing I couldn’t understand though. I asked the doc how often I should have the tetanus jab and he says “if you suffer heavy wounds, then once every five years, and light wounds every seven.”
None of that makes any sense to me.
Does anyone understand what he is talking about?

To be honest I couldn’t be bothered asking him, as I often end up in these fifteen minute conversations which always result in no more understanding than which I went in with in the first place. I’m sure any long term-ers know what I’m talking about.[/quote]

The vaccine is good for 10 years.
vaccineinformation.org/tetanus/qandavax.asp

Adults need vaccines too. Boosters mostly, but keep record. Doc may think you need it more than others beacuse you get hurt often.