How to Deal with Pet Burns and Provide Immediate Care?
Pets, especially dogs and cats, have the knack for getting into trouble every now and then. But amidst their playful antics, we often overlook concerns looming in the form of injuries and accidents.
For any pet parent, the safety and well-being of their pets is of paramount importance. Since animals are curious creatures, accidents, and mishaps can still happen no matter how cautious and vigilant we are with our pets. Burn injuries are common in indoor pets and can occur due to many reasons. No matter how minor the burn may look on the surface, it’s best to seek medical care from animal hospital Virginia Beach.
Anything from household appliances to chemicals can start a fire and injure our pets. Thus, knowing how to provide the right care for your pet’s burns and injuries is essential.
In this blog, we will delve into the topic of pet burns and care and walk you through the necessary steps to handle pet burns effectively.
Types of Burns and Their Causes
Thermal Burns: Thermal burns happen when the pet directly touches heated objects, hot surfaces, or flames. Pets might knock over hot vessels when sniffing for something to eat or get too near to the stove. Even steam can also scald your pet if they are exposed to direct steam.
Chemical burns: Plenty of household items can cause chemical burns to pets. Exposure to corrosive cleaning substances, detergents, and other chemicals can lead to chemical burns in dogs and cats. Pets may get into the cleaning closet of the garage and can inhale the chemicals, ingest them, or get it on their skin.
Electrical burn: No matter how many chew toys we get out of pets, they will still prefer chewing on electric wires and cords. Pets can get electric burns if they come in contact with live electrical wires or get near faulty appliances or electrical outlets. There is a risk of electrocution or severe burn in such a case. Since electrical burns are not visible on the skin, they should be treated by medical professionals.
Friction Burn: These burns result from friction against a rough surface, leading to skin abrasion and potential tissue damage. They commonly occur during accidents like being dragged on an uneven surface.
The severity of Pet Burns
Not all burns are the same. There are three different degrees of burn categorized for the purpose of care and treatment. Before putting your pet on a burn treatment, the vet first assesses the severity of the burn.
Burns are generally categorized into three degrees:
First-degree burns primarily affect the superficial layer of the skin. Such burns are painful and often manifest as redness and swelling. Such burns can be treated at home by cooling the burn area.
Gently run cool water over the burn for about 20 minutes. Ensure the water is cool and not cold, and it drains so as not to put your pet through further shock. While handling the wound, make sure your hands are clean.
Meanwhile, get in touch with your vet for further assistance.
Second-degree burns affect multiple layers of the skin and often result in redness, blisters, and intense pain. Such burns can affect several layers of the skin and expose deeper layers of the skin that may appear leathery or white in color.
It’s best to consult your vet if you suspect your pet has second-degree burns. Avoid popping the blisters that may form due to the burn. To prevent the wound from further contamination, cover it with a sterilized non-stick bandage.
Third-degree burns are the most severe and require immediate veterinary attention. These burns affect all layers of the skin and can even damage underlying tissues. If you believe your pet has a third-degree burn, seek emergency care from a veterinarian Virginia Beach. Avoid applying creams or soothing gel to the burn area as it may worsen the condition and even hinder proper wound assessment.
Immediate Steps to Take for Pet Burns
Seeing our pet in any sort of discomfort and pain is disheartening. If such an unfortunate thing happens to your pet, waste no time in seeking help from the vet. Taking immediate and appropriate action can help your pet recover and heal faster.
Your primary concern should be preventing your pet from any further harm. If there is an ongoing fire, save yourself first and then remove your pet from the fire site.
If your pet is suffering from a thermal burn, carefully cool the burn area with cool water for some time. In case of a chemical burn, wash the affected area with water for at least 15 minutes to dilute the chemicals. Be careful when washing the chemical off the pet’s body as it may splash onto other parts and worsen the condition.
If your pet has suffered an electrical burn, immediately turn off the power source to prevent getting an electrical shock yourself. Electrical burns often affect internal organs and don’t manifest on the skin surface. Thus, you should seek immediate emergency veterinary care.
To treat friction burns, clean the wound with an animal-safe mild antiseptic. Avoid scrubbing the wound as it may further cause pain to the pet and damage the skin tissues.
Severe burn wounds, if left open for a long, can become septic. Besides this, your pet may lick the wound and further worsen it. Thus, keeping the burn covered with a clean non-stick bandage or cloth is best. Make sure you don’t wrap the bandage too tightly.
Preventing Burns in Pets
Of course, prevention is the best approach. To minimize the risk of burns in your pet:
- Always keep an eye on your pet, especially around open flames, hot surfaces, and chemicals.
- Pet-proof your home by keeping potentially dangerous substances out of reach of your pets.
- Be cautious during extreme weather conditions, as hot pavement and surfaces can lead to burns.
- Remember, your pet’s safety is in your hands, and being proactive can go a long way in preventing accidents.
Dealing with pet burns requires swift action, careful assessment, and professional veterinary care when needed. By understanding the severity of burns, providing immediate first aid, and seeking the guidance of a veterinarian, you can ensure your furry companion’s well-being and comfort. Remember, while accidents happen, your attentiveness and care can make all the difference in your pet’s recovery.