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The mouth of a dog is not sterile, contrary to some assumptions. Occasional licking of a recent wound may cause serious problems for the healing process, but excessive licking can slow, halt, or even infect an existing wound on a dog. Bitter-tasting creams, sprays, and ointments can be employed to deter the dog’s tongue. In some cases, you may need to either cover up the wound such that the dog cannot lick it, or otherwise disrupt the dog’s access, likely through a dog cone.
The following tips will help when dealing with your dog’s wound. 1) Wash your hands thoroughly; 2) use cotton pads and mild antibacterial liquid soap to clean the wound thoroughly; 3) rinse the wound with a sterile saline solution; apply antibacterial ointment to the wound; 4) cover the wound with gauze, wrap it around with bandage, and cover it up with cohesive bandage (but not so tightly that you cut off circulation); 5)periodically feel your dog’s toes.
Chances are if you’re asking yourself this question, the answer is yes. Just to be on the safe side, though, the following are some of the sure signs that your dog’s wound is infected: the wound smells bad and has a discharge, a redness that doesn’t recede as it should with healing, swelling, pain and tenderness. While the latter two may not designate an infection, and the former two almost always do.