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Understanding infections from dog bites

On Behalf of | Apr 16, 2024 | personal injury |

Dog bites can happen unexpectedly and vary greatly in severity, from minor nips to serious wounds. While the immediate physical damage can be clearly visible, what often goes unnoticed are the potential infections that can develop from these injuries. Dogs’ mouths contain a host of bacteria that can cause infections if transferred into a human wound. It is important to treat every dog bite seriously by properly cleaning the wound and monitoring it for signs of infection.

Recognizing the risks associated with dog bites is important for preventing complications. as infections can complicate the healing process, leading to more significant health issues if not treated promptly and effectively.


Pasteurella is a type of bacteria found in over half of infected dog bite wounds. Symptoms typically appear within 24 hours of the bite and can include redness, swelling, pain at the wound site and occasionally, a discharge. People with a weak immune system may experience more severe symptoms.

Staphylococcus aureus

Staph bacteria, which can live harmlessly on the skin, might cause an infection when they enter the body through a dog bite. Symptoms include swelling, redness, pain and pus formation. Some strains, like MRSA, are resistant to many antibiotics, making them more challenging to treat.


Capnocytophaga can cause infections in people with weaker immune systems, though it is less common. Symptoms may be severe and include blisters, redness, swelling, pus, fever and joint pain. The infection can spread to the rest of the body and become life-threatening if not addressed quickly.

Always treat dog bites with care and attention to protect yourself from potential infections. Follow us on Facebook to get the latest news and updates from Spencer and Associates.