What to Do if Your Dog Suffers a Burn

When you think about it, there are a lot of hot surfaces in your house that can potentially burn or scald your dog—stoves, hot pots and pans, grills, heaters, blow dryers, car exhausts. And that’s not even counting the chemicals and other household cleaners that can cause chemical burns. In addition, electrical equipment of many types can cause electrical burns.

With all the risks, it’s imperative that you know how to respond should your dog suffer a burn of any kind. If the injury is minor, you can treat it at home. For more severe burns, take your dog to your Milford veterinarian immediately. Here, a Milford vet tells you what to do if your dog suffers a burn or scald, either in the first degree or worse.

First-Degree Burns

A first-degree burn will not break the skin. It will be painful for your dog, but the skin will still be intact.

If your dog suffers a first-degree burn from hot liquids or objects, keep your dog still and cool the affected area as quickly as possible. Run cool water over the burn, then apply a cold compress—a frozen bag of vegetables wrapped in a cloth will work—to the area for at least 20 minutes. Cover the area with a safe and sterile bandage. Call your Milford veterinarian afterwards to make sure your dog doesn’t need a follow-up examination.

If your dog came in contact with volatile chemicals of some kind, flush the burn area with cool water for at least 20 minutes. Wear rubber gloves to make sure you remain safe. Cover the burn afterwards with a sterile bandage.

Electrical burns can be treated the same way as burns from hot liquids or objects—running cool water over it, applying a cold compress, and bandaging.

Second- and Third-Degree Burns

For second-degree or third-degree burns, when the skin is broken either partially or fully, you need to act quickly. Your pet may be in shock, and he should go to a veterinary hospital immediately. Apply a clean dressing to the burned area. DO NOT use cotton or other loose-fibered materials, as they can stick to the wound painfully. Call your Milford veterinarian and take your dog in immediately. He or she will treat your pet and make you aware of the treatment and recovery plan.

Of course, it’s easiest to avoid burns and scalds altogether. Do your best to keep your dog away from hot surfaces, liquids, or chemicals and electrical appliances that pose danger. When cooking, keep your pet out of the kitchen. If you’re cleaning with chemicals, make sure your dog isn’t nearby. Using common sense, you can avoid burns altogether. If they do occur, though, perform initial care and then call your Milford veterinarian. The quicker you act, the quicker your dog will be back to normal!


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