Just as with a child, a broken bone for your Labrador can be stressful and scary. If you suspect that your dog has broken a bone, you should get them to the vet as soon as possible. But, until you can, here is a quick summary of what you need to do.
What to Do if Your Lab Breaks a Bone
First keep yourself relaxed and act according to these important steps:
- For your safety, it is best to muzzle the Lab. This will keep him from trying to bite anyone or become excitable. A sweet and loving dog may bite out of fear and pain as their instincts kick in for fight or flight. So, even if your dog has never done anything to make you think he or she would bite, it is best to be cautious.
- Gently slide a clean towel under the limb that you believe to be broken.
- If the broken bone is visible, cover the exposed wound with clean gauze, a bandage, or clean towel.
- Get your dog into the car and be careful not to move the limb anymore than you absolutely have to.
- Try and keep the dog as calm as possible and do not allow them to move the body part.
- NEVER try to re-set the bone yourself.
Different types of Breaks
Tail breaks are very difficult to manage and should be brought to the attention of a vet ASAP. If the dog’s tail begins to change color, get them in even quicker. Getting this bone back in place is hard even for the most experienced vet and the longer that you wait the more difficult and painful it will be.
Broken backs are very concerning and you should do as much as you can to keep the dog as stationery as possible as you rush them to the vet. There is no time to waste.
If your dog has a broken rib, and the lump where the broken bone sits is hard, then he does not likely have a punctured lung. But, if it is soft, they will need care even more quickly as they may begin to have respiratory problems.
The most important thing is to remember NOT to play home vet with a broken bone. If you can, make your dog comfortable, stop any bleeding and comfort them verbally, but never try to re-set it. In most cases, it is probably best not to even splint it.
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