CORPUS CHRISTI (KIII NEWS) - Dog bites are a major cause of morbidity in the United States with reports from each state and territory. There are also a small number of fatalities each year. All breeds of dogs are involved although certain breeds are responsible for more attacks relative to their numbers. The terriers, working dogs and herding dogs are responsible for a majority of the reported dog bites. All age groups of people are affected although the bites tend to be more severe and involve the face and neck more often in the younger age group.
The attacking dog and the attacked person are most often acquainted with the majority of bites being by the family dog or the neighbors dog. Once a dog has been aggressive then it is safest to avoid them especially if children are present in the household. An infant should never be left unsupervised with a dog, even if it is the family dog.
Once a bite has occurred medical assistance should be obtained. At the ER or the family physician's office, they will assess the wound and clean it and apply the appropriate wound care. If it is a known dog, then the animal control authorities will be notified and depending on the dog's history rabies vaccine may be recommended. If the dog is not known, it will likely be recommended. The treatment of the wound itself will be determined by its location and characteristics.
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