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When a dog has a wound, it tends to lick it, as if its saliva was somehow healing. In fact, among us there are many myths about the salutary power of saliva. But how much is true? Is nature as wise as it seems?
Among us and also among dogs, there is usually a great transfer of saliva. Dogs lick you by way of greeting or to show their affection. Between us we exchange saliva to show love or directly lick ourselves to enliven our erotic games.
But the truth is that human saliva contains a negligible amount of bacterial agents. The act of kissing is very unhygienic. And it is even said that the bite of a human being can be more dangerous than the bite of a dog.
But in the saliva of dogs also live a large number of germs that are not recommended for an open wound. So why does the dog lick it? Basically, because the wound itches. And oorque the ascorbic acid of the saliva reacts with the nitrates of the skin forming small concentrations of nitrogen monoxide (NO), which helps the healing and disinfection of your wounds.
But this natural remedy is less effective than the one proposed by medicine. In the first place, because the good number of dangerous germs that can infect the wound is also accompanied by the disinfectant effect of saliva. From medicine, it is also known that the most effective way to fight a wound is allow it to dry, and a wet tongue is not a good idea if we want to achieve that.
Reason why, after a veterinary operation, dogs are encasqueta that kind of plastic funnels on the head: in order to prevent the instinct, forged in a natural habitat in which there were no other more hygienic alternatives, leave Step to medical knowledge. Or put another way: dogs lick their wounds because they have not studied medicine.
Share Dogs lick their wounds because they have not studied medicine
The dog language and the causes of lam>
To understand our four-legged companions a little more, we must say that the canids that live in nature, when they have a wound, the only way to clean themselves is by licking. There is no disinfection or a healing ointment to help them. So in this case, we should say that the major pollutants are normally removed. But that should only be admitted in cases where they live in their natural habitat and without being able to access a disinfection with soap and water.
As we advance in the introduction, dogs can lick their wounds for different reasons. It is often their way of communicating with others, asking for food and interacting with the world around them. But many times we observe that our dog has generated the wound himself. After excessive licking, mainly on the front legs and punctually between the fingers, we will see lack of hair in the area, redness and often until bleeding. When we discover this we run to the vet and inform us, in most cases, that they are caused by stress or boredom, so we return home more disappointed than at the beginning since they inform us that our animal is suffering. Many times, our furry friend gives us signs that we overlook, unintentionally and ends, with this mark on his skin. We talk about acral lick dermatitis.
There are several ways to prevent the dog from licking a wound. For this we can resort to physical elements that prevent the dog from licking or devote more time to perform longer walks, intense games and lots of pampering, which in general is what they are asking us.
In the background it should be noted that an animal that licks, also generates endorphins that soothe the burning or itching of the wound generating relief. The best thing we can do is be attentive to our dog to be able to assist him if he needs us.
How to make a dog not lick a her>
Ideally, try to find out correctly what it is the cause of the lick. If it was due to an injury due to surgery, we already have the answer. But in the cases that we navigate in a nebula and each member of the family thinks something different, we will go to the vet to listen to receive a specialist's diagnosis. It is essential.
Once we receive the diagnosis we must pay attention to wound care. Sometimes it may require the use of painkillers and even sedation, especially if we talk about a process that involves a lot of pain. The treatment indicated by the veterinarian must be followed, for example the application of a cream.
In addition, there are several tricks that we can use to prevent the dog from licking a wound:
- The Isabelino necklace: either rigid plastic, cloth or eva rubber, the collar is undoubtedly one of the most useful tools to prevent the dog from licking wounds. However, some get depressed, try to remove it or do not carry out their daily routine as normal. It is advisable to remove it from time to time and, while we remove it, supervise it to prevent it from being licked.
- Rigid cervical collar: This collar is much more effective than the previous one, however, its price is higher and we can only find it in specialized sites or in certain veterinary clinics.
- Leg socks: If our dog's wound is on one leg, we can use a sock to prevent him from being bitten. We can fix it with a bandage.
- Cohesive bandage: We can find these types of bandages at any pharmacy and they are very useful, since they adhere to themselves, never to the fur. We can cover the wound in a leg, tail, neck.
- Body: Finally, we suggest the use of a body for dogs or, in its absence, a body for babies or young children. Although putting it on can be very cumbersome, completely covering your body is an excellent way to prevent licking, especially if the wound is in an area that is impossible to cover. Obviously we must remove it during the walks.
Now you know different ways to prevent a dog from licking a wound. Of course, if you have any ideas, suggestions or questions that we can add, do not forget to comment!
If you want to read more articles similar to How to prevent my dog from licking a wound?We recommend that you enter our Skin Care section.
A question that science does not finish solving
As usually happens in almost all cases, scientists do not quite agree on this issue. And nothing is absolutely final. Because what seems to be an indisputable truth today, tomorrow can become something that is ignored.
So, today we can point out that While it has been shown that dog saliva has some healing properties, it is also no less true that it contains some bacteria which can contribute to infect a wound.
So, for now, it is better that you avoid your hairy lick the injured parts. And that you turn to the veterinarian to indicate the best treatment you should use to heal the injured area.
A question with no definitive answer is whether we should let a dog lick his wound. At the moment it seems that, despite some beneficial substances present in the hairy saliva, there is a risk of infections due to the presence of some harmful microorganisms.
Pros and cons of letting the dog lick his wound
A chemical analysis of canine saliva shows that it contains antimicrobial and antifungal proteins. That is why it helps to heal the various wounds and reduce scars.
But the presence of other germs in this liquid causes the risk of aggravating the situation.. Especially if it involves larger or deeper wounds.
Further, if the lesions are kept moist by the constant licking, it will most likely take longer to close. It can also happen that dogs lick compulsively, hurting themselves even more.
How to treat wounded areas of hairy
If your pet's wound is superficial, you can heal yourself, according to the instructions made by a professional.
He will know how to tell you the appropriate antiseptics for your dog's skin and, if necessary, what type of medication and in what dose you should give him.
But If the lesion is deeper or you notice other alarm signals, take your furry to the vet as soon as possible.
In any case, as you don't have to let the dog lick his wound, you have to use a bandage or dressing. And, from there, you should observe that the animal does not want to take it away. In these cases, it will be necessary to resort to an Elizabethan necklace.
Information on the saliva of the dogs
According to recent research, The dog's saliva strengthens the immune system of the people they live with. For that reason, it can help prevent, for example, allergies in humans.
In Colombia, a thesis carried out at the University of Santander, Cúcuta headquarters, determined that it inhibits the growth of some bacteria and that, in addition, can help in healing processes.
For its part, a study conducted at the University of Arizona indicates that the microbes present in the stomach of dogs could have a probiotic effect on our body. This benefit would be transmitted through the hairy saliva and strengthen our bacterial flora.
For now, don't let your hairy lick his wounds
In short. No one disputes since the saliva of dogs has antibacterial components. But nobody dares to say that it does not also have some components that are not entirely friendly.
For such reasons, for now it is better not to let the dog lick his wounds. And you should also avoid licking that of other hairy and even that of people. Pay special attention in the case of children.
And while nature is wise and we can think that if the dog is licked instinctively it is because he knows that it will heal that way, we can also say that he does it because it is the only “tool” he has at his disposal to try to relieve the discomfort or pain caused by the injury.
We will keep you abreast of any developments in this regard that arise in the world of scientific research.