Dogs are beloved pets and loyal companions to millions of people globally. They are known for their friendly nature and are often called man’s best friends. However, even the most behaved and well-trained dog can be aggressive toward humans.
When bitten by a dog, it is advisable to search for animal attack lawyers in your area to take legal action. Dog bites result in minor bruises, infections, severe bleeding, broken bones, and other life-threatening situations. Besides physical damage, a dog bite will also affect your emotional and psychological well-being.
This article will discuss the severe diseases a dog bite injury can cause in humans.
Rabies affects mammals, including dogs, and is caused by the Rabies virus. The virus is transmitted to humans through the saliva of an infected dog through a bite or scratch. Once the virus is transmitted, it travels through the central nervous system damaging the brain and the spinal cord.
Initial symptoms of rabies in humans include fever, headache, and weakness. However, as the disease develops, the victim will be anxious, confused, aggressive, agitated, and paralyzed.
When left untreated, rabies is fatal.
Nonetheless, when a dog bites you or a loved one, you can seek treatments to prevent the virus from causing the disease.
Tetanus is a bacterial infection that affects the nervous system causing muscle stiffness and even death. A dog bite is one avenue for the bacteria to get into the body; once in the body, it produces toxins that affect the nervous system.
The bacteria symptoms show a few days or weeks after exposure to a dog bite. For example, you could experience muscle stiffness in the jaw, neck, and stomach making it hard to open your mouth or swallow anything.
When not treated early, tetanus causes fever, respiratory difficulties, heart failure, and eventually death. Therefore, when bitten by a dog, seek immediate treatment to manage the bacteria infection. Alternatively, if you are not vaccinated against tetanus, use a tetanus vaccine to prevent future infections.
The bacteria that cause Pasteurella infection are primarily found in dogs mouths and are transmitted through a bite or scratch. After one is infected, the symptoms take 24 to 48 hours to show. These symptoms may include swelling, redness, and severe pain around the injured area.
The infected area can also feel warm when touched and may produce pus.
While the disease is not considered severe like others on the list, it may lead to complications like cellulitis.
Although Capnocytophaga infection is rare, it causes severe bacterial infections in humans. Since the bacteria are found in animal saliva, e.g., dog saliva, they can enter the human body through a wound opening.
When infected, the victim experiences the symptoms after 3 to 5 days. These symptoms may include swelling, fever, fatigue, and joint pain. In more severe cases, Capnocytophaga infection leads to sepsis.
Therefore, when bitten by a dog, seek medical attention immediately.
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus (MRSA)
MRSA bacteria resist various antibiotics, including methicillin, making it very difficult to treat. It also leads to infections like pneumonia and skin and bloodstream infections. To reduce and possibly prevent the spread of MRSA, you must practice good hand hygiene and other healthcare settings of infection control.
In summation, while dogs are friendly and loyal human companions, even well-trained dogs can be aggressive. Dog bites cause various physical injuries, emotional and psychological distress, and severe diseases. These diseases include rabies, tetanus, Pasteurella infection, Capnocytophaga infection, and MRSA.
Therefore, when bitten by a dog, you must seek immediate medical attention and treatment to manage the disease. Also, practice good hand hygiene to help prevent the spread of MRSA.