Vets typically apply latex wraps instead of sticky adhesive bandages to cover a wound on a dog. Sometimes, though, the location or type of injury means that there's no choice. That puts you in a tough position when it's time to change the bandage or remove it altogether. Adhesive bandages tend to get a firm grip on Fuzzball's fur, so you can't simply tear them away without putting her through unnecessary pain.
Grease Her Up
Oil effectively breaks down the sticky stuff that makes a bandage stick to Fuzzballs's fur like, well, glue. Apply a few drops of olive or vegetable oil to the top of the bandage. Allow a few minutes for the oil to soak through and start working on the adhesive. Then slowly and gently pry one edge of the bandage away from Fuzzball’s fur before working on the other side. Take your time and work the bandage little by little out of the fur. If it isn't coming out easily, apply more oil and wait another three to four minutes before trying again.
Shampoo It Out
Washing a bandage off of your dog is an option if the wound beneath is healed entirely. Once the vet has given you the green light to get your dog's skin wet, give him a bath. His normal shampoo should do the trick of detaching the bandage from his hair painlessly. But if you want to be certain that it will come free, apply a shampoo especially formulated to work on sticky substances like gum, glue or tar.
Make a Grooming Appointment
When all else fails, don't attempt to cut the bandage from Fuzzball's hair yourself; you could accidentally cut her skin and be the cause of another open wound that needs bandaging. Instead, make an appointment for her with the groomer. She can expertly clip the bandage out of her hair without harming her and make her look fabulous in the process.
Avoid These Home Remedies
Many of the typical go-to remedies that you might use to remove sticky substances from any other surface may be dangerous to use on your dog. These include rubbing alcohol, cold cream and nail polish remover, which can be poisonous to Fuzzball and should be avoided.
Elle Di Jensen has been a writer and editor since 1990. She began working in the fitness industry in 1987, and her experience includes editing and publishing a workout manual. She has an extended family of pets, including special needs animals. Jensen attended Idaho and Boise State Universities. Her work has appeared in various print and online publications.