Ways to Keep Dogs From Licking Incisions

by Ledan Seja
    The dreaded "cone of shame" can help save your pooch's incision.

    The dreaded "cone of shame" can help save your pooch's incision.

    Janie Airey/Lifesize/Getty Images

    After surgery or any incident involving a required incision and stitches, your pooch is likely going to be uncomfortable and she'll try to get those stitches out by licking and sometimes biting at them. As the incision heals and the fur starts to grow back, she'll probably suffer a great deal of itching in the area. Unfortunately, however, she can pull out stitches or cause inflammation or infection by licking and biting.

    Step 1

    Keep her on a leash and under supervision for at least the first few days following the surgery. Your veterinarian may have a longer recommended time frame depending on the type of incision. Not only will being on a leash while outside allow you to keep an eye on her, it will also keep her from getting into strenuous activity or near dangerous objects that may pull the stitches.

    Step 2

    Place a bandage or even a sock over an incision on the paw or leg. You can keep a sock from falling down with the use of some tape -- just don't tape it too tightly.

    Step 3

    Place a T-shirt over your dog if her incision is on her chest. You can tie a knot in the bottom of the shirt around her waist to keep it from being too big. The shirt should not be restrictive against her chest nor should it be so big that it affects her walking capabilities.

    Step 4

    Place an Elizabethan collar or a cervical collar on your pooch to keep her from getting to her incision. While she may try to get the Elizabethan collar off for the first few days, she'll become used to it. The cervical collar is a slightly less-awkward device.

    Items You Will Need

    • Sock or bandage
    • T-shirt
    • Elizabethan or cervical collar

    Photo Credits

    • Janie Airey/Lifesize/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Ledan Seja has been writing since 2009, specializing in natural ecosystems, gardening and landscape design, the environment, wildlife, insects, pet rescue and childcare. Her work has appeared in various online publications.

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