How To Proceed if Your Dog is Bleeding

To control external bleeding, place a clean piece of sterile gauze over the wound and apply firm pressure. If the blood soaks through the gauze, tend not to remove it. Instead, put another piece of gauze along with the saturated gauze and continue to use pressure. If the bleeding still will not cease, and the wound is on an extremity, try using pressure on the arteries that provide blood to the bleeding area.

Pressure points for these arteries are found on the interior of the upper front leg and rear leg and also the underside of the base of the tail. Pressure on these regions will reduce the flow of blood to the wound.

If the bleeding still doesn’t prevent you may have to apply a tourniquet — but just as a last resort. A tourniquet should at no time be applied around the neck or over a break or a joint. It should not be left in place for more than 10 minutes. Once the tourniquet is set up, take the dog to vet promptly.

Apply a tourniquet as follows:

Never use a cord or rope, as it is going to cut the underlying skin.
Tie a knot in the fabric and place a powerful stick in the loop of the knot. Tie another knot in addition to the one holding the stick.
Wriggle slowly until the bleeding slows. Fix the stick by tying or taping.
Cover the wound lightly with a bit of clean cloth or gauze.
Internal bleeding is more difficult to find, but may be imagined if the dog is bleeding in the mouth or anus, vomits blood, has bloody feces, is in a coma or in shock. Transport to the veterinarian immediately.