If you don’t have a dog… That doesn’t mean it won’t bite you. Alas, even pets attack people. What can we say about stray animals!
It is necessary to clearly understand how to act in such a case. Pediatrician Vera Rush helped us to draw up an algorithm of actions. Why a pediatric doctor? According to statistics, cute dogs bite boys and girls most often, and the instructions for providing first aid to an injured child are practically no different from helping an adult.
For any bite, you must go to the emergency room. If it is not located in a neighboring house, then you need to immediately treat the wound with soapy water, rinse with running water or use any antiseptic, and then cover the affected area with a sterile napkin. This will not save you from the rabies virus, but even very much from the development of purulent inflammation. Alternatively, you can call an ambulance, which will take you to the infectious diseases department of the nearest hospital.
The doctor will examine and treat the wound and prescribe vaccinations. Modern medicine offers only six injections (on day 0-3-7-14-30-90) instead of the 40 injections in the abdomen that were done before. If the face, neck, or bites are multiple, additional immunoglobulin injections may be needed.
The first injection is given immediately after the bite. Next, you need to come to the emergency room or clinic on the third and seventh day. On the tenth day, a dog that has bitten a person should be examined by a veterinarian. If he gives the conclusion that the animal is healthy and does not have rabies, then vaccinations can no longer be done. So it is written in the instructions for the rabies vaccine, in accordance with it, doctors in trauma centers and hospitals act. But often people are attacked by stray animals that bit and ran away. There is no one to show the veterinarian, which means that the victim needs to get all six vaccinations. By the way, some cautious doctors insist on full vaccination even if the veterinarian has issued a certificate of good health for the dog. They are guided by the fact that the incubation period of rabies can last up to a month (in isolated cases). Keep in mind that there are no contraindications for emergency (non-prophylactic) rabies vaccination. Even pregnancy in this case is not a medical challenge, let alone SARS, albeit with a temperature of under forty, or an exacerbation of a chronic disease.
Please note: if you know the dog and its owners, are convinced of its health and the presence of vaccinations in the certificate, it is still not worth the risk and generally refuse injections. Preventive vaccination against rabies, which is supposed to be given to animals every year, ensures that the animal does not die from this disease. But it can still become infected and transmit the virus to a person.
Symptoms of rabies in an animal:
- profuse salivation and vomiting;
- sagging of the lower jaw;
- hoarse and muffled barking;
- convulsive seizures;
- aggressive and inappropriate behavior.
Please note: at the time of the bite, these symptoms may not be observed in the dog! However, it may already be contagious.
Children under five years old are vaccinated in the thigh, everyone who is older – in the shoulder. And once again: cough, runny nose, fever, any medical advice is not a reason to refuse emergency vaccination against rabies. But it is worth informing the doctor about all concomitant diseases and possible reactions of the child.
And here’s another thing you should know: the likelihood of developing the disease is associated with the localization of the bite. When the face or neck is affected, the disease occurs in 90% of cases, with bites on the hands – in 60%, in the shoulder or thigh – in 23% of cases.
About preventive measures
People employed in dangerous and potentially risky jobs are vaccinated against rabies. First, three injections are made – on the first day, on the seventh and thirtieth. A year later, the scheme is repeated, and then it is necessary to do one injection every three years. This applies to people who live or are on vacation in remote villages, where there is not a single doctor around for many kilometers. Also, preventive vaccination is necessary for hunters who are at high risk of being bitten by a rabid fox or ferret.
Important: rabies is not transmitted from person to person!
If you are bitten by a domestic dog, the question arises of the responsibility of the owner. Under federal law, the owner must:
- register with the authorized bodies of animals, the conditions of keeping or use of which require their presence in public places; (Article 10 of the Moscow Law “On Animals”);
- from the age of two months to vaccinate a dog against rabies, evading registration and vaccination of dogs against rabies is subject to a fine of 0.2 minimum wage in accordance with Art. the city of Moscow”;
- provide, upon first request, a certificate of vaccination of the dog and / or provide observation of the dog for 10 days; at your request, go with the dog for examination (in accordance with the Federal Law “On Veterinary Medicine” dated May 14, 1993 No. 4979-1);
- pay the attention of the owner to the following: walking with a dog without a leash in conditions that do not ensure the safety of surrounding people and animals (in parks, boulevards and specially protected natural areas) is subject to a fine of 0.05 minimum wage in accordance with Art. 2.1 Decree of the Government of Moscow dated February 8, 1994 N 101 “On approval of the Provisional Rules for Keeping Dogs and Cats in the City of Moscow”;
If these requirements are not met, you have the right to write a statement to the police (to the duty unit or district police officer) to bring the owner to criminal liability (the basis will be causing harm through negligence in accordance with paragraph 1 of article 118 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation). You can also leave a complaint on the Angry Citizen website in a special section.
You can also file a claim for compensation for material (due to involuntary expenses for medicines) and non-pecuniary damage. For example, in Moscow, the fine for an animal attacking a person causing harm to health is 0.5 minimum wage. The statement of claim should state the event that took place, attach medical documentation confirming the fact of the bite, and receipts for the purchase of medicines. Such an application can be filed with the court within three years.