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Discussion Starter #1
Snowball got into a bit of trouble on Thursday with a couple of much smaller dogs. I gave the other owner my contact info and offered to pay for any vet bills. She's been very good so far about keeping me up-to-date, luckily only one of her two dogs was injured and they had a check-up booked on Friday anyway and everything seemed normal.

However, this morning she e-mailed me to say that she had shaved her dog yesterday and found an infected wound, and she was taking him to the vet to get it checked out. She responded later to say that it was an abscessed puncture wound. I'm not a vet, or a vet tech, but with my limited (university-level) microbiology/immunology knowledge, I feel like a wound becoming infected and abscessed in less than 48 hours seems atypically quick. The incident occured at ~8pm on Thursday, she e-mailed me at 4pm Saturday to say the wound was abscessed.

I intend to pay the vet bill from today regardless, I'm just curious for my own knowledge. I can't find anything about it online.
 

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It's not all that unusual. I attended a lecture recently, given by a vet, on when to bring your dog in. She mentioned that bite wounds are an occasion to bring the dog in to be seen. The 1st reason was to avoid infections, which can develop quickly. The 2nd reason is because not all damage is visible. Some wounds, especially around the face, neck and torso can actually have internal damage due to the pressure from the bite.

An abscess in a healthy dog should heal quickly if given the right meds.

Kudos to you, btw, for doing the right thing. I hope he heals quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the info. I just know in humans, abscesses typically take a few days at least to start to develop, but I also know that dog biology, while basally similar, is not the same. But I suppose most abscesses in humans don't develop from bite wounds. I guess I'm just surprised that the vet didn't find the wound on the initial exam on Friday - I had assumed that a puncture wound would bleed and surely be noticeable/sore when the vet did the work-up, and considering they found the first puncture wound then.
 

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Bites don't take long to abscess, partially because there are a lot of bacteria inoculated and then trapped into a fairly small wound, and partially because dogs' skin doesn't contain nearly as many capillaries as people's do. So even full skin thickness wounds don't bleed very much if the deeper tissues aren't involved. Which is also why they can be very hard to find in fur. (This is also why dogs don't bruise as commonly or easily as we do.)
 
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