Heal well with Careful Treatment

Question:
We have a Rhodesian ridgeback, chow, Sheppard mix. I made the error of shaving his coat. Now these red bloody abrasions keep appearing.

Dr. Nichol:
As with any medical problem, attempting to diagnose a skin disorder without a physical exam would be a serious gamble. But – I suspect clipper burns. Without frequent lubrication the friction between those rapidly moving blades generates serious heat.

Clipper burns are seldom severe but they are miserable and can take a few weeks to heal. Cleaning those wounds twice daily with a moist wash cloth is the safest way of avoiding infection. Your veterinarian can manage the initial treatment and teach you how to continue at home. The doctor may prescribe a pain reliever and, if necessary, a topical antibiotic. Do-it-yourselfers beware: gooey ointments like Neosporin should be avoided because they slow healing. Light bandaging may be helpful. Sorry, there is not a quick fix. Your dog’s photos with Santa could look worse than Rocky’s. Maybe he should wear a disguise. Going forward, spray those clipper blades often with an aerosol like Kool Lube so they’ll stay cooler, last longer, and treat your dog’s skin better.