Dr Jill Drake BVSc

Dealing with wildlife can create many more challenges than when treating domestic pets. The mere fact that you are handling them in the first place is stressful to the animal, but then there is the reason you’re handling them, which is usually due to an injury. Along with the injury comes pain and shock and together with the stress can lead to the animal’s death. So minimising the amount of interference can be life saving when dealing with certain kinds of injuries.

One of the most common problems that I deal with in hedgehogs is dog bite wounds. Often these injuries occurred a day or two before the animal was found, and by that time, the wound has become necrotic and has attracted flies. Fly-strike and the resulting maggots in wounds intensifies pain, while concurrent infection can result in septicaemia and shock. It is essential to clean the wound and remove all eggs and maggots. This wound normally require scooping out the bulk of the small live maggots, picking out the large ones and flushing away the eggs, all of which is time consuming and causes further pain and stress to the already compromised hedgehog.

The hedgehog is a difficult animal to work with, in terms of having spikes rather than fur over the majority of its body. Spikes can be cut with scissors to provide better access for cleaning wounds, but flushing presents a few other problems. It is impossible to prevent the liquids from running across the surrounding skin as the spines inhibit cottonwool packing around the wound. As a result, the animal becomes quite wet, is very difficult to dry thoroughly and they become cold, which aggravates shock.

The F10 Germicidal Barrier Ointment with Insecticide is a useful treatment for all wounds and injuries, but with the addition of an insecticide, the F10 Germicidal Barrier Ointment with Insecticide has become a safe and effective method of ridding wounds of maggots and fly eggs quickly, with minimum stress. 

Depending on the condition of the animal and the extent of the fly strike, I may try to do some bulk cleaning. Thereafter, using a spatula, I apply a thick layer of the “pink ointment” (F10 Germicidal Barrier Ointment with Insecticide) into and over the wounds and anywhere that fly eggs have been laid. In a matter of minutes the maggots starts dying and after an hour or two, most are dead. As with the treatment of any animal, it is safer to wait until it is in a more stable condition before trying to clean the wounds more thoroughly. In the Interim, I feel secure in the knowledge that having applied an anti-bacterial ointment, I have at least done something constructive for the wound in general.

Even while receiving treatment in the clinic, the smell from large necrotic wounds can attract flies, so by applying the F10 Germicidal Barrier Ointment with Insecticide to the wounds after daily treatment, fly-strike can be prevented.

By getting rid of the maggots with minimum pain and stress can greatly increase the hedgehog’s chances of survival. Using the F10 Germicidal Barrier Ointment with Insecticide has made all the difference to the way I manage fly-strike and bite wounds in general.

F10 Germicidal Barrier Ointment with Insecticide – hedgehog with dog bite wound (Sept 2009)

As presented

After recovery