Animal Bites & Scratches
Each year, dogs bite approximately 5,000,000 people across the country. Of those, almost 60% are children and 70% occur on the pet owner’s property.
If you are bitten by a dog, follow the steps listed below to ensure proper treatment of the bite:
- Immediately soak the wound in soapy water and scrub the bite area gently.
- Dry the wound and apply an antiseptic such as iodine.
- Seek medical attention immediately.
- Report the bite to the Prince George’s County Police Department at 301-352-1200 and the Health Department at 301-583-3750.
- Try to have someone keep the animal in sight. If you know where the animal lives, notify the owner so they can contain the animal.
- Contact the Animal Services Division (ASD) at 301-780-7200 if the animal is still at large and in the area.
- If the animal is not owned or the owner is unavailable, call ASD to have it picked up and/or quarantined.
- Remember: Keep your distance from wild animals and never approach any animal that shows unusual behavior.
The quarantine procedure for an owned animal with a current rabies vaccination that bites or scratches a person is listed below:
- The animal must be quarantined for 10 days.
- The animal can be kept at home as long as there is limited human contact and no other animal contact.
- The animal can be walked on a leash as long as there is limited human and no other animal contact.
- Call the Health Department at 301-583-3750 and ASD at 301-780-7200 if the animal gets sick or dies while under quarantine.
- The animal cannot get a rabies vaccination until after the 10-day quarantine.
- If your animal is bitten by another animal, call the Health Department for quarantine information.