How to Clean a Dog Wound: Easy Steps That You Should Know

how to clean a dog wound

It is inevitable that sometimes your dogs will get hurt and it is up to you to apply first aid to the wounds. That being said, if you don’t know what you are doing, you might cause more harm than good.

This article that I have prepared aims in providing you a step by step guide on how to clean a dog wound easily.

Providing comfort for your dog and lessening the pain is one of your responsibilities as pet owner. If the wound is not too deep, there is no need to rush your dog to a nearby veterinary clinic.

If the wound is deep, and you cannot seem to stop the bleeding, then that is the time that you need to enlist the help of the professionals to keep your dog safe and not in harm’s way.

Things You Will Need

  • Warm water

This is an important element because it is basically used to wash the wound before applying medications.

  • Scissors or electric clippers or razors

This is needed to shave off the hair around your dog’s wound. The scissors or the razors that are disposable must be used with extra care to avoid further hurting your dog.

  • Water-based lubricant (e.g., KY jelly – not Vaseline)

This material is essential to easily remove the hair or shave the hair within the wound. Moreover, it reduces the possibility of contamination.

  • Clean towels (paper or cloth)

The clean towers are used for wiping down the water-based lubricant or to keep the skin dry before apply medications. Also, it is used to wipe down the area near the wound.

  • Antiseptic solution

The antiseptic solution is important to prevent more infections. You can buy the Chlorhexidine. This solution is very cheap, but effective.

On top of that, you can get this medication easily because it is readily available. You can buy 2% solution so that you reduce the incidence of tissue irritation for your dog.

However,some dog owners are using the 4% solutions. Chlorhexidine is effective because it can prevent infections from different types of bacteria.

  • Antimicrobial ointment

For traumatic dog injuries, it is ideal to use a wide spectrum antibiotic that contains bacitracin, polymyxin B or neomycin.

However, if you are dealing with problems related to yeast specially if your dog is allergic to it, buy miconazole ointment instead.

Steps in Treating the Dog Wound

Here are some of the steps that you can follow to assist you in providing first aid to your dog’s wounds.

1. Calm your dog: Before applying anything else or cleaning the wound, you need to calm your dog first.

2. Control the bleeding first and address it promptly:

To control the bleeding, you need to apply a direct pressure on the wound. You can do that by using an absorbent material such as towel, shirt, or gauze and absorb the blood. You need to keep it there for 3-5 minutes the most.

Apply pressure on the wound and check from time to time if the bleeding stopped. Keep the pressure always so that you will not disturb the blood clot. Apply a tourniquet if needed.

However, a tourniquet must be your last resort to control the bleeding. Position your dog on a table or use a counter. If it is too high for you, you can use the ground if your dog is a large one. Request assistance from anyone in your family to help you in restraining your dog if needed.

3. Muzzle your dog if necessary. If you think that your dog is in pain and might affect the treatment or the cleaning process, you can muzzle your dog temporarily.


4. Flush out the wound using warm salt water: Add 2 tsp of sea salt to a 1 cup warm tap water. Stir the glass until all of the salt are dissolved. Also, you need to use a syringe (without a needle) you can squirt gently to the affected area or wound until it's clean.

5. Use a water-based lubricant: Get the water-based lubricant. Clean your dog’s wound by washing it with the lubricant. You also need to clean the surrounding areas as well

6. Use the electric clippers or razors: You need to shave hair surrounding the wound. Be careful to not cut the skin of your dog and check for presence of bleeding

7. Use the towel that you have prepared: Proceed by wiping the water-based lubricant. Wipe the hair away using the clean towel that is dry. You can also use a paper towel as an alternative as well.

8. Get the warm water and clean the wounded area with warm water. If it's clean from any form of debris, you can pat it dry.

9. Use the non-stinging antiseptic: Apply it in the wounded area. After that, get the antimicrobial ointment and apply it to the wound. You can either get bacitracin, polymyxin B or neomycin. If your dog is sensitive, you can use miconazole ointment instead.

After the medications are applied, you need to prevent or stop your dog from taking away the ointment or grooming it. The medication must be on the wounded area for at least 10 minutes the most.

Additional Tips

Before you clean your dog’s wound, it is important to know some of the dos and don’ts. These are some useful information that will guide you on the things that you must avoid and the things that you should know.

  • In cleaning, avoid the usage of toxic chemicals in treating your dog’s wounds such as chlorhexidine soap because it is a toxic substance.
  • You need to clean the wound 2-3 times a day, depending on how deep or serious the wound is.
  • If the wound is still unhealed, contact your veterinarian right away or bring your dog to the nearest veterinary clinic.
  • Do not use hydrogen peroxide because it not only kills bacteria, but the good cells as well.
  • Do not be in a rush when cleaning your dog’s wounds. Take the time to clean the wounds properly.
  • Do not use or apply a tourniquet if you don’t know how to. Otherwise, you need to seek help from the experts.
  • Prepare the supplies and place them within reach so that when you need the supplies as you clean, it is easy to get it.
  • Do not forget to clean the wound in a daily basis.
  • Do not forget to apply antiseptic or the ointment to ensure the healing of the wound and prevent further implications.


Dealing with dog wounds might be difficult at first, but if you are oriented of the process, you can do the cleaning by yourself. This concludes our step-by-step guide on how to clean a dog wound easily.

It is our utmost hope that you can gain a lot of things from this tutorial and try to apply these first aid process at the comfort of your own homes.

Keep your dog safe and secure but dealing with fresh wounds as soon as you can. With this simple guidelines, may you use it to lessen the pain and discomfort of your dog.

If you have some experiences regarding treating your dog’s wound, feel free to comment. If you have additional tips or suggestions, I would love to hear from you, so don’t forget to leave a message below.


Anna Stewart

Hello!! I'm Anna. I have many hobbies about pets and animal, especially about dogs. In this blog I will share those necessary things you need to know about your dogs like behaviors, training, favorites, health care ... and more. Visit my blog regularly and share the fun with your dogs.

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