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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 14570
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian
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He keeps biting at the end of s tails and has bitten it so

Customer Question

He keeps biting at the end of his tails and has bitten it so much it is bleading and raw
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Is the dog bleeding a lot?
Customer: No just splatters when he shakes his tail
JA: Phew. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Black lab 2 years
JA: What is the dog's name?
Customer: Riley
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Riley?
Customer: No
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: 4 months ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 4 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.

I'm so sorry to hear that Riley's tail has a sore on the end of it that he is chewing on, despite your best efforts to stop him. This sounds like happy tail, which is a condition that occurs when a dog wags his tail and traumatizes the tip repeatedly on a hard surface, such as on furniture or walls.

If he is chewing as aggressively as it sounds like then this will be almost impossible to clear up with just home care. It appears that this has turned into a deep tissue infection which is both painful and itchy and topical treatments/ointment only seals in the infection.

I would recommend a big Elizabethan (lampshade) collar so he cannot reach the end.

But I also recommend that he see his veterinarian for oral antibiotics to treat the secondary infection, which may need to be given for several weeks.

I also recommend sedating him, debriding his wound and using a laser to seal the nerve ending and blood vessels at the end of his tail. This helps tremendously with pain, bleeding and the urge to lick and chew his tail. This can allow healing and save the tail tip.

In some cases pain medication and a sedative or anti-anxiety medication need to used for a period of time to break his chewing habit until he heals.

Your veterinarian can show you how to use an empty syringe or syringe casing to make a protective bandage over the tip of the tail that still allows air to circulate. This is not easy to do as incorrectly bandaging the tail can lead to cutting off the blood supply and make things much worse, so have someone show you how to do this the right way the first time.

In severe cases we sometimes need to amputate the tip of the tail if the damage is too severe. If the infection spreads too deeply it can involve bone or even get into the spinal cord canal.

Please let me know

Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 4 months ago.

Hello, I wanted to make sure that you didn't have any further questions for me, and I'd like to know how things turned out for your pup. If you could give me an update that would be great, thank you, ***** *****