What is a bandage?
A bandage is a soft padded covering made up of at least 3 layers of material. In contrast a cast is a hardened version of a bandage with soft padded interior. Most bandages only apply light compression, and are not meant to be constrictive, but restrictive. Expect the bandage or cast to be large, even bulky, unlike people small bandages usually do not work on pets. Animals can easily remove a small piece of tape or band aid. The first layer of the bandage is often composed of cotton, if there is a wound the doctor may choose to apply ointment and a non stick gauze pad. A generous amount of cotton roll is applied, followed by stretch gauze known as conform to apply mild constriction. Then the outer layer is made of vet wrap a breathable, stretchy, colored coating or covering, sometimes tape may be applied to the top or the bottom as needed.
How to care for your pets bandage?
- Use an e-collar- to prevent your pet from eating it’s bandage at all times, in order to prevent the need for surgical removal of bandage materials from the GI Tract.
- Keep bandages clean and dry as possible, use plastic bags/press and seal to wrap the bandage while outside, do not leave plastic on longer than 30 minutes. If bandage becomes soiled contact your veterinarian for a replacement.
- Check the bandage twice daily to make sure it is still in proper placement, there is no odor, discharge or stains. Also check any areas below the bandage for swelling, if applicable.
- Do not replace bandages at home unless under the careful guidance of a veterinarian. Improperly placed bandages can cut off circulation and lead to tissue death.
- Over all make sure you keep your scheduled rechecks, follow your doctor’s orders explicitly, and contact your Veterinarian at the first sign of trouble.
- Signs of trouble include water marks, blood stains, moisture, odor, or slipping