Large animal wounds


Cellulitis is disseminated infection under the skin – the bacteria grow in the tissue planes rather than in an abscess capsule.

The affected area becomes warm, swollen and painful. Animals will be febrile and have changes in white blood cell counts.

Therapy is systemic antibiotics and NSAIDs. Oral antibiotics are not always sufficient. Limbs are also bandaged to remove swelling and decrease pain.

If left swollen, limbs will develop problems with lymphatic and capillary flow. Many affected horses will be prone to limb edema with stall rest.


Client education article

Key Takeaways

If the limb is swollen, hot and painful, think cellulitis. Treat with antibiotics and firm wraps to push the fluid out of the limb.




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Large Animal Surgery - Supplemental Notes by Erin Malone, DVM, PhD is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.