A burn is an injury produced by dry heat and a scald by moist heat, but the first-aid treatment is the same for both. Except in very minor cases, these injuries need immediate treatment by a veterinary surgeon. Shock is present in all moderately or seriously burnt or scalded dogs and the prognosis for the latter is not good. Toxaemia and sepsis are common secondary consequences.
The dog should be treated for and placed in a bed, lightly but warmly covered and made as comfortable as possible. A teaspoonful of bicarbonate of soda should be given by mouth and the dog should be encouraged to drink warm milk with glucose, as fluid is most important in injuries of this kind.
The burn or scald should receive emergency treatment as follows: the hair over and surrounding the area should be removed with round-topped surgical scissors and the wound covered with dry bicarbonate of soda applied thickly, or with a pad soaked in a solution of bicarbonate of soda and water, one ounce to one pint of boiled water. Infection of such injuries is common, so everything used should be scrupulously clean and the wound covered as quickly as possible. On no account should grease, oil or ointment be used.
Very small burns can be successfully treated with tannic acid jelly.
The diet of burnt or scalded dogs should in due course be especially rich in the protein (body-building) foods such as meat, and extra supplies should be given to help in the repair of the injured tissues. The extra protein is equally necessary in accident cases and wherever there is serious injury, as soon as a normal diet is allowed.