Do I need tetanus after dog bite? A Step-by-Step Guide

Urgent advice: Get help from NHS 111 if:

Youve been bitten and:

  • you think there may still be objects like teeth, hair or dirt in the wound
  • the bite is hot or swollen (it may also be painful, red or darker than the surrounding skin)
  • you have a high temperature
  • fluid is leaking from the bite
  • the bite smells unpleasant
  • you were bitten on your hands or feet
  • you were bitten by a person
  • You can call 111 or get help from 111 online.

    You could also go to your nearest urgent treatment centre.

    What to do after animal or human bites

    There are some things you can do after being bitten by an animal or a person.

  • clean the skin around the wound with soap and warm water – you can also use antiseptic, but try not to get it in the wound
  • try to remove any objects like teeth, hair or dirt from the wound using running water
  • gently squeeze the wound so it bleeds slightly (unless its already bleeding) – this can help reduce the risk of infection
  • press a dry dressing or clean cloth firmly onto the wound to stop the bleeding if its bleeding heavily
  • after cleaning the wound, gently pat it dry and cover it with a clean dressing
  • take paracetamol or ibuprofen to help ease any pain and swelling – children under 16 should not take aspirin
  • Our Attorneys Will Work to Prove Negligence

    Negligence is the basis for a personal injury claim. Your lawyer will aim to prove that the dog owner, and any other responsible parties involved, was negligent by:

  • Showing that the dog owner owed you a duty of care, which was to protect you from their dog’s dangerous behavior
  • Establishing that the owner did not protect you from their dog and, in failing to do so, violated their duty of care to you
  • Showing that the dog bite resulted in your damages
  • We will work to prove negligence based on evidence. We can use a variety of sources to prove that the dog bit you and that the owner is liable.

    Complete a Free Case Evaluation form now

    Dog bite/punctured wound & Tetanus

    In most cases, your doctor will recommend a tetanus shot after a dog bite if you havent had a tetanus shot within the past five years. While there are no statistics on how many cases of tetanus have passed from dogs to humans, and tetanus is rare in dogs, there is still a chance that a dog bite can transmit tetanus to humans. A dirty wound presents a higher risk, but your doctor is likely to order a tetanus shot for any bite that has broken the skin.