Host: How should I respond if my child is bit by an animal?
Robin Vick: Animal bites, even bites by a family pet have the potential of causing significant injury to children. If the skin is broken, either by a bite or a cling wound and there is bleeding, the doctor should be found. The skin is punctured there is the potential that, germs, significant bacteria can be transmitted from the animal to the child. An additional concern that we need to worry about if the injury has occurred to an animal that we don't know, a wild animal or a cat or a dog who we don't know to have up to date immunizations. Particularly rabies, we need to be very very worried because rabies is a potentially deadly disease that can be transmitted very rapidly from an animal to a child. So any time the skin is broken, I would recommend that even if it's the family pet, you call your doctor.
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