My dog was just attacked by two pit bulls, and it's badly injured as you might suspect from such an attack, but there is one wound in particular that I do not know how to handle.

At the top of the head, near the neck, there's a bone-deep gash 2 inches long and 1/2 inch wide (I'm pretty sure I see the bone clearly through the wound -- After consulting a veterinarian I found that this is not actually the bone, but the thin tissue /membrane that covers it. -- ). It's such a wide open cut, I'm not sure how to treat it.

I've treated the injuries with veterinarian-supplied spray for wounds, but there is no after-hours clinic anywhere near here, so I'll have to wait until 8 AM to bring the dog to be stitched up.

She's miserable but eating and drinking and she's near a heater, with food and water close.

Is there anything I should do for this severe wound that I have not already done?

  • 2
    Due to the hour and site size, I may not get advice on this tonight, but perhaps the answer may be helpful to a future Googling pet owner who's pet has the same type of injury..
    – user2477
    Commented Jun 14, 2014 at 9:14
  • 3
    In my case, the dog's deep head wound, according to the vet, was the least of our worries. What I hadn't seen was the gash inside her ripped ear, which went even deeper and was more ripped than the head wound.
    – user2477
    Commented Jun 14, 2014 at 17:30
  • 5
    Tip for pit-bull attacks: Pits go for the ears, and when in pairs, can work together to nearly rip the victims ears off. In my case, this resulted in a very serious injury on the inside of the ear that I did not notice. So make sure you check the dog's ears thoroughly and get antibacterial spray / ointment into them immediately.
    – user2477
    Commented Jun 14, 2014 at 19:02
  • 1
    Pits also go for face, head and chest. Actually they go for any part of the body since most don't just attack or bite ears. Plus 1 for the comment because that is actually a really good and interesting tip. Commented Jun 14, 2014 at 19:11

1 Answer 1


Disclaimer: I know little about dogs in particular.

First aid for cats and dogs is not dissimilar to first aid for humans. There will be differences in the specifics such as bandages and medicines, but in the immediate term you need to do the same things. In your instance the primary risks are of bleeding and shock.

Most of what your animal needs is therefore:

  1. safety
  2. the feeling of security

It sounds as though you've addressed the first by removing your dog from the danger, ensuring that any bleeding has been managed, the risk of infection has been addressed.

The second is covered by the facts that you have her somewhere quiet, safe and warm, you're with her, and food and water are available.

A quick google for "first aid for a dog" led me to these two sites as the top results:

and they would hopefully alleviate your own concerns about whether there is anything else that you can do until you manage to get professional veterinary care.

Oh, and look after yourself, too - she needs you now more than ever.

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