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Dr. Jennifer
Dr. Jennifer, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 183
Experience:  Caring for dogs and cats in general practice since 2005
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My dog cut herself pretty bad last night. She needs stitches

Resolved Question:

My dog cut herself pretty bad last night. She needs stitches but I can't afford to take her right now. The gash isn't deep but it's wide. What can I do?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Jennifer replied 7 years ago.
Hi, just a few questions first... Exactly how big is the wound? Is it bleeding? What breed and how big is your dog? Can you take a picture of it and post it here?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
She is a Boxer. The wound is not bleeding. It is a little bigger than a silver dollar.
Expert:  Dr. Jennifer replied 7 years ago.
Hi, as long as the wound if fairly superficial, many of these will heal ok on their own as long as they do not get infected. Without stitches, it will just take longer to heal and may leave more of a scar. You can try to keep it as clean as possible at home by carefully trimming away any hair around the wound that might get into it, and cleaning it 1-2 times daily with a disinfectant. Peroxide can sometimes damage the healthy tissue and may delay healing, so I prefer to use dilute Betadine (generic: povidone iodine) for the daily cleaning. You can also put Neosporin or an equivalent triple antibiotic ointment on it 2-3 times daily, after you clean it.

However, if the wound looks like it is starting to get infected, such as increased redness, swelling, or discharge, you may need to take her to see the vet for antibiotics. Even if you can't afford sedation and stitches, a vet visit and antibiotics is less expensive and may be ncessary. You can even ask for a prescription to get the antibiotics from a pharmacy, which may save you some money over buying it at the vet clinic. Many antibiotics are on the $4 list at the Wal-Mart pharmacy, and our local Publix even has a free program for some basic generic antibiotics. Good luck, and hopefully your girl heals without complications.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Should we leave it uncovered or put a abndage on it?
Expert:  Dr. Jennifer replied 7 years ago.
I would just leave it uncovered. It's usually very hard to keep a bandage in place over a dog's back.
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