Animal bites and scratches that break the skin can sometimes cause infection. Some bites need to be closed with stitches while others heal on their own.
Rarely, animal bites (particularly from wild animals) can lead to rabies, a life-threatening disease. Bats, raccoons, skunks, and foxes transmit most cases of rabies.
When seeking treatment, have the following information on hand:
Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: April 2014
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