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3 yr old has a small mark on leg due to dog bite. Is any injection required ?

Hi, a dog from a hotel we were staying at snarled at our 3 year old. We don t know if it bit or scratched him but we did notice a small mark on the back of his leg. (Again not sure if this was from the dog or a scratch from earlier in the day as we can t think how the dog could have bitten the back of his leg if he was facing the dog). This was 2 days ago and we are not sure if we need to do anything e.g rabbies injections . Any help would be appreciated. The mark on his leg is about 3cm in length with the tiniest pin size break to the skin. Many thanks. AAAAA
Asked On : Sat, 13 Oct 2012
Answers:  1 Views:  95
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Dentist 's  Response
Hello and thank you for your question.
Rabies can be transmitted through a wound, scratch or abrasion when it comes in contact with the saliva of a rabid animal, and through a scratch inflicted by an animal if fresh saliva is on the nail of the animal that inflicts the scratch. Immediate and thorough cleaning of the wound is essential. Flush with a strong stream of water. Wash well with soap or detergent. Next, apply a disinfectant (isopropyl alcohol, tincture of iodine or quaternary ammonium compounds) to the wound and surrounding tissue, taking care to get it under skin flaps. Then, take the person to a doctor or emergency room. Rabies is always fatal especially if not treating within 48 hours of the incident.

Since this dog was in a hotel and owned by someone most likely it had been up to date with its rabies shots. Also since the dog was facing your child and the child was scratched on the back of the leg, this was most likely caused by a separate event. I would think that rabies shots would not be necessary. The animal if sick with rabies, would have tried to attach your child, you and your husband.

Best Wishes

Dr. Ward
Answered: Sat, 13 Oct 2012
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