Dog Friendly Tips: Burns
The seriousness of severe thermal burns must not be minimized. Helpful initial treatment consists of cooling the affected areas with ice packs. Ice in a plastic bag works well, but this is no substitute for veterinary care, since shock may develop later that can kill.
Cooling the burned areas seems to help reduce pain and if done quickly may reduce healing time. If thermal burns are not extensive, phone the vet for suggestions. He or she may suggest gently removing the hair in long-haired dogs with scissors and cleaning the burned area with attained iodine soap such as surgeons use to scrub with prior to surgery. Ask your vet or a pharmacist for the best soap and burn remedy.
Burns with caustics and acids can be as serious or even worse than thermal burns. In such cases the chemicals must be removed in all haste with copious amounts of water.
If the base of chemical burns is an oil, add your own vegetable oil, massage it in, and bathe the area as soon as possible with a mild detergent soap such as one that is used to wash dishes.
If as much as half the skin is severely burned by thermal or chemical burns, consider putting the dog to sleep, as the pain involved with this extent of damage is unbelievable and usually ends in death anyway.
Dogs are fortunate in having surplus skin so that large scars left from healed burns can be removed with excellent cosmetic results. If the scars are too severe for excision, vets use grafts effectively.