Courtesy of www.firstaidfordogs.co.za
Burns can be caused by an electric shock, heat, chemicals, sun, or even worse torture by humans as part of a gang initiation.
TYPES OF BURNS:
* First degree
* Second degree
* Third degree
For first and second degree burns, examine the area under the fur. If the skin is not broken (blisters have not popped) run cool water over the area and then apply a cold compress (frozen peas). Never apply ice directly on to the burn as it may increase the pain. If the blisters have popped, do not apply a dressing or cover the area with a bandage. Veterinary attention is recommended as the animal may be in severe shock.
If your pet has third degree burns, his skin may be white in colour, or even black and charred. This type of burn can get infected very easily and will take a long time to heal. Transport immediately to a veterinary hospital.
SUNBURN – (especially susceptible are white or albino cats) Run cool water over the area and then apply a pack of frozen peas or cold compress for about 15 to 20 minutes. The coolness will help to bring down the swelling and stop the spread of the burn. Ask the veterinarian for further advice regarding the antibiotic cream that could be used. Do not use sunburn protection cream meant for humans without consent of your vet.
Walking dogs on a hot tarmac road can also cause the animal to overheat and their paws may become red and sensitive to the touch. Soak the paws in cool water for about five minutes until the animal’s body temperature returns to normal. Check the dog’s paws for blisters – gently bandage if necessary to prevent infection.
CHEMICAL BURNS - wash the area with cool water to try to remove most of the chemical from the skin. Make a mixture of four teaspoons of baking soda to two cups of water, spread this evenly over the area. This should help counteract the chemical. Monitor the animal’s condition in case he may have swallowed some of the chemical – treat for poisoning and transport to a veterinary hospital.
ELECTRIC SHOCK / BURN – switch off the electrical source. Lay the animal on its right side and check for pulse and breathing. Pulse can be felt on inside of thigh – if no pulse - start chest compressions (CPR). Artificial respiration should be started immediately if not breathing. Maintain CPR until the animal starts breathing on its own and has a pulse. Keep warm to minimize shock. There are a number of injuries resulting from an electric shock - transport immediately to the veterinary hospital.
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