Bite Wound Figure 2

Figure 2: Bite wound to muzzle in adult male rat (Silky).
Case history and photos


Silky was an adult male of unknown age when he was rescued from the SPCA in June, 2004. For most of his life he was housed in a dwarf rabbit cage either with a cagemate or alone. His first cage-mate was a male named Gomez, followed by a male cage-mate named Gollum. Much of Silky’s time was spent free-ranging at will, sticking to his couch unless put on the floor. Silky was later neutered and lived some of his remaining life with two girls, Pamplemousse and Juliette, in a Grotto styled cage.

Clinical Signs

Silky was living with Gollum in a cage on top of another cage. Another of the boys climbed up and bit Silky hard on the nose.


Bite wound to muzzle.


Held an ice compress to his face first day, then Preparation H® was applied to reduce swelling. He received oral Baytril, and for the first week an antibiotic ointment was applied to his face.

Treatment done on recommendation from vet and the RMCA site.


After one week of treatment; the scab fell off, and the fur began to grow back in.


It was explained to us that oral meds are very important for facial bites. For other bites that may occur elsewhere on the body our vet stated Hibitane® (chlorhexidine gluconate) washes are sufficient.
*Please note*: That bites can in some cases lead to abscesses. It is important to clean the site as soon as possible. Check with a vet regarding an appropriate antibiotic.


The photos of Silky’s bite wound shown below.

 12 hours after bite wound

Photo 1: 12 hours after sustaining bite wound. Bruising can be noted.
   24 hours after bite wound

Photo 2: Bite wound 24 hours later.

swelling occurs

Photo 3: Shows right side of Silky’s muzzle swelling.
  Silky starts to heal

Photo 4: Beginning to heal.

Silky still on medication

Photo 5: Shows Silky during the time still receiving medication.
  Continues to improve

Photo 6: Continuing to improve.

Case History and photos courtesy of Jane Sorensen of — Archived page from 2021-01-26 (via the Wayback Machine)


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