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What should I do if I get bitten by a dog?

Being attacked by a dog is a scary experience. Every year, there are dog bite victims in Connecticut. Some may suffer minor injuries, and others may experience severe injuries that have a lifelong effect on them. Regardless of the severity of the injury, when a dog bites you, it is essential to seek the proper medical care to prevent the bite from becoming a serious health issue.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the first thing you should do is wash the dog bite with soap and water. This helps to remove debris, bacteria and anything else that could cause infection. It also allows you to properly assess the bite. If it is bleeding, apply pressure until it stops. You can then apply antibacterial cream and a bandage.

There are some situations where you should immediately seek medical care. This includes any situation where the bite affects the ability to function or there is severe pain. Also, if you try to stop the bleeding but it will not stop, you should see a doctor. It is also a good idea to make sure you get medical care if you have not had a tetanus shot in the last five years and if you cannot verify the dog is current on its rabies shot. Even if the wound seems fine at the time of the incident and shortly after, you should see a doctor if you later notice it is red and swollen or if it has drainage. This could be a sign of infection.

You should try to speak to the owner right away to get information on the dog. You also need to report the bite to authorities. This information is for education and is not legal advice.

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