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Can you spot the signs of a dog bite infection?

On Behalf of | Mar 12, 2022 | Uncategorized |

If a dog attacks you, your first instinct is to check yourself for signs of physical injury. After all, most dogs have sharp teeth and claws that can easily tear through human flesh. You may even suffer broken bones and nerve damage in a serious attack.

Even if you seem to be mostly fine, you may not be out of danger. In fact, because of the bacteria in canine saliva, you may be vulnerable to a potentially serious Capnocytophaga infection. This type of infection can be a medical emergency.

What is Capnocytophaga infection?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Capnocytophaga is the collective name for millions of germs that live inside a dog’s mouth. While Capnocytophaga does not cause the dog to become ill, these bacteria can cause you to develop an infection. In about 30% of infections, patients become critically ill within 72 hours of the onset of symptoms.

What are the symptoms of Capnocytophaga infection?

The most common symptom of Capnocytophaga infection is blistering around the bite wound. If you have small, medium or large blisters, you should go to the emergency room immediately. Even without blistering, though, the following symptoms may be evidence of Capnocytophaga infection:

  • Diarrhea, nausea, vomiting or loss of appetite
  • Redness or discharge around the bite wound
  • Fever, chills or sweats
  • Muscle pain or weakness
  • Joint pain
  • Headache, confusion or dizziness

Even though seeking emergency medical care can be expensive, you do not want a possible Capnocytophaga infection to turn into sepsis or septic shock. Remember, you may be eligible for financial compensation from the dog’s owner to help you pay for the medical care you deserve.