To help prevent animal bites, you should not leave your younger child unsupervised around animals and you should teach them not to play with or touch stray animals.
While stray or unfamiliar animals cause some bites, most children are bitten by their own pets or other animals that they know. Minor wounds that simply scratch the skin surface can be treated by washing the area with soap and water and applying an antibiotic cream.
More serious bites, including those that break the skin, should be evaluated by your physician. See the First Aid area for more information. Animal bites that become infected will become red, tender, have drainage of pus, and your child may have swollen glands and or fever. Consult your doctor immediately if any of these signs appear.
You may also need to notify your local animal control department or health department if it is possible that the animal that bit your child has rabies. Although rare today, your child may be at risk for catching rabies if he is bitten by an unimmunized dog or cat or by a wild animal, including bats, skunks, raccoons, or foxes.