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Dr. Matt
Dr. Matt, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 5773
Experience:  DVM - 13 years experience in canine medicine and surgery.
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My dog was bitten by a rat. She is up to date on vaccines.

Customer Question

My dog was bitten by a rat. She is up to date on vaccines. It looks swollen. Is it ok to wait to take her to vet tomorrow.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Is your dog bleeding a lot?
Customer: I rinsed wound with salt water
JA: What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: It happened while I was at work. My fiancée said there was some blood
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about your dog?
Customer: Samba, 6
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Veterinarian about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Matt replied 5 months ago.

Hello - I am Dr. Matt - I would be glad to help you with your question.

Where on her body was Samba bitten by the rat?

How large is the open wound?

Is she licking at the wound?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
It's on her bot***** *****p. I can't tell how big, it happened in my absence and I can't get all the information from the person who witnessed it. It seems that she has some swelling on the lip.
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
She only licked it when I was trying to see it
Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Oh and Thank you for your help.
Expert:  Dr. Matt replied 5 months ago.

Thank you for the additional information.

Ouch - I am sorry to hear that Samba was bitten on her lower lip. That is definitely not a fun place to have a wound. The good news is that you should be just fine to wait until tomorrow as long as the cut from the bite is not very large. Your vet most likely will not put any stitches in this location unless the wound is larger then 1-2 cm in length. Most wounds on the lip will be treated with antibiotics and sometimes a cleaning solution called Chlorhexidine that is safe around the mouth. Therefore, I do think it would be safe to wait until tomorrow to take her to your vet.

For tonight, if you wanted to help with some of the pain/swelling you could consider giving her some aspirin. This is the safest of the over the counter pain medications for dogs. The dose is 5 mg per pound every 12 hours. Some dogs can develop an upset stomach from aspirin though most dogs will tolerate one or two doses just fine. Cleaning the wound is also a good idea as you did, salt water is honestly not a bad solution at home though even a mild antibacterial hand soap such as Dial and warm water can be flushed on to the surface of the wound. Overall, you can take her to the vet tomorrow and then they can start her on an oral antibiotic which should help prevent infection. As long as she is up to date on her Rabies vaccine, I would not expect any risks from that virus also.

Hope this helps - please feel free to reply if you have any questions. Thank you!

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Thank you!
Expert:  Dr. Matt replied 5 months ago.

You are very welcome!