Splint Care

  • Do not allow your pet to chew on the splint. Use an Elizabethian collar if necessary. 
  • Splints must remain clean and dry to prevent moisture sitting against the skin.
  • If the splint gets wet, allow it to fully dry before reapplying.
  • It’s a good idea to check your pet’s toes daily for any swelling.If the toes become cool and/or puffy, it’s possible that the splint has been applied too tightly and is impairing the circulation of the limb and needs to be removed.
  • If your pet develops chafing of the skin in any area due to rubbing of the splint, you may have to add some padding or baby powder to the affected area.
  • As always, contact your veterinarian with any concerns.

No cone collar for wound protection

 

REAR SPLINTS

Rear Splint

Hock Splint

No-Knuckling Training Sock

Hock Wrap

 

Broken bones, congenital conditions and injuries.

Applying a Bandage or Splint on your disabled dog.  

You must be careful as you can injure your dog further if the bandage or splint is not put on properly.  If you need to bandage a wound or injury.  You'll want to do it properly so the dog is less likely to lick or pull at the bandage, possibly creating further damage.  If necessary, use an Elizabethian collar. This guide will show you the proper way to bandage or splint an injury.

Suggested Materials for bandaging

 White Tape: This can be used as a first layer to prevent slipping, and as a final layer of bandaging. The tape can be purchased at any pharmacy.

Sterile Non-Stick Pads: Telfa Pads are ideal. IF this is an emergency bandage, then use a small piece of cloth, but apply K-Y jelly first so the cloth doesn’t stick.

Cotton padding: For injuries that need support, such as ligament injuries or fractures,  cotton padding adds a layer of support.  Either cotton rolls or a small towel wrapped around the leg works well.

Gauze: Roll gauze is the clingy material that stretches and has holes in it. There are many kinds to choose from...I prefer nonstick pads with embedded antibiotics when possible as they seem to help wounds heal faster.

Tape: The last layer on a bandage is the adhesive that secures the pad and gauze in place. I usually use a product called Vet-Wrap; it stretches and sticks to the gauze but not fur.  It is stretchy, clingy and sticks to itself giving additional support. It is easy for you to take off, and difficult for your dog to remove making it an ideal wrap for pets . In an emergency, you can use painter's tape, duct tape, and Saran Wrap to hold the bandage material in place. I highly recommend anyone with pets have at least a roll or two of vet wrap on hand - you'll use it!

Elastikon:  Made of high twist, cotton elastic cloth tape and a rubber based adhesive, it is ideal for pressure dressings requiring elasticity.  It works well when you need to wrap something that won't stay on with vet wrap such as a tail or leg.  Typically it's used for sport strapping or muscle injury, but works well on pets but care must be taken to make sure it's not too tight and it WILL stick to fur.. You might not use it often, but when you do need it, you'll be glad you have it.

The key to applying a good bandage is to make the bandage tight enough that it won’t slip, but NOT too tight so that it cuts off circulation. If the bandage is TOO tight, you will see the area below the bandage swell and if not  loosened, can cause permanet damage. Leave a few toes exposed if possible to check this.  If you need to keep the foot clean, use an old sock or plastic bag over the other wrapping.

The other important part of bandage care is keeping the bandage dry. If it gets wet it will cause serious skin irritation and infection. If it gets wet, then You MUST change it. Keep it covered with a plastic bag.  One suggestion I've heard is to ask your local veterinarian for an empty IV Fluid Bags - I'll have to try that. 

Bandaging a Leg

  • The most common area to bandage is the leg.
  • Clean the wound properly.
  • Apply the non-stick Telfa pad to the wound.
  • Wrap the leg with gauze, beginning at the toes, but leave the toes exposed. Overlap the gauze/vet wrap as you wrap up the leg.
  • Make the gauze wrap firm to keep the Pad in place, extend up to the next joint. 
  • If the wound is on the paw, wrap to above the wrist.
  • Cover the gauze with Vet Wrap or Tape. Once again make it firm, but not too firm. Keep the toes exposed to check for swelling.

A Head Bandage

  • This is best accomplished by folding the earflaps on top of the head, then wrapping gauze and tape around the head covering the ears.
  • Keep the bandage in front of the eyes, and make sure you can stick one finger underneath the bandage at the neck.
Body Bandage

If you need to cover a wound on the chest or abdomen, there are a couple of ways. The easiest is to use an old T-shirt. Put your dog’s front legs through the armholes, and cover the rest of his body with the shirt. You can then apply Tape to secure the back of the T-shirt.

 

Splints

If immobilization is the goal, so a break can mend or if there is a cut on a joint, you may want to invest in a splint.  A splint allows muscles and tendons to rest, and tears to heal.  It immobilizes joints so the joint can rest and heal. 

Forelimb
Common Conditions that May Benefit from Splints

  • Osteoarthritis of the carpal or metacarpal joints
  • Degenerative Joint Disease (DJD)
  • Polyarthritis
  • Soft tissue injuries to carpal or metacarpal tendons/ligaments
  • Carpal hyperextension
  • Carpal or metacarpal joint instabilities or malformations
  • Brachial plexus or radial nerve damage injuries
  • Neurological conditions causing knuckling of paw
  • Post-surgical protection
Hind Limb
Common Conditions that May Benefit from Splints  
  • Osteoarthritis of the tarsal or metatarsal joints
  • Degenerative Joint Disease (DJD)
  • Polyarthritis
  • Soft tissue injuries to tarsal or metatarsal tendons/ligaments
  • Achilles tendon injury
  • Tarsal hyperextension
  • Tarsal or metatarsal joint instabilities or malformations
  • Neurological conditions causing knuckling of paw
  • Post-surgical protection

There is a link to a company you can order a wide array of splints from on this page. You will probably need to do some measuring to obtain the correct size.