Learning about the 10 most common pet injuries helps you be prepared. Read on and plan your prevention tactics when you head out with your pup.

You saw it coming. Too bad for Sparky, he had to learn the hard way. Bees don’t like to be chased. And neither does the neighbor’s cat. That’s not a stripe around her belly, it’s a black belt.

Bee stung, cat scratched, every dog gets his scrapes. But how do you know whether to offer a kiss and a treat, or a ride to the vet? We got our paws on a great article from WebVet.com to help us all out. They reported on the top 10 most common pet injuries released by the Veterinary Pet Insurance Group (VPI), and went a step further with tips on what to expect and do next if your pet is injured.

Read on to learn about the most common injuries to watch for, then check out the full article at WebVet.com for all of the details.

Lacerations and Bites

Your dog is no match for the raccoons sniffing around on garbage day. Nasty fight wounds top the list of all pet injuries. Dog to dog, cat to cat and you got it – dog versus cat, plus look out for scuttles with other wild critters.

Torn nails

Your doggie jumps up quickly and one of his little nails is gets stuck on the rug or under an object. There’s lots of blood from torn nails, but these do usually look worse than they are.

Insect Bites and Stings

Spiders, bees, wasps – these guys have it out for pets. Insect bites and stings were the third most common pet injury, with bees taking the crown.


From little scrapes to severe cuts, these injuries run the gamut depending on the depth of the pet’s injury and the intensity of the bleeding.

Eye trauma

Tree branches, cat scratches, your dog’s dreamy eyes are easily injured and exposed to the risk of dangerous corneal ulcers as a result.


Sharp objects can pierce your pet’s skin and cause all kinds of trouble. A prick of a nail or shard of glass can cause be dangerous since they are easy to miss covered by fur and can cause infection.

Foreign objects

Aside from all the household items your dog’s prone to ingest (think: where’s your remote control?), many natural sources end up in your pet’s body. Foxtails, burrs, and other seed pods attach to pets’ fur and get lodged in their ears, skin and feet. Over time, these grasses and weeds can even work their way into the internal organs making your pet very sick.

Snake bites

Floridians, watch out for water moccasins. Southern Californians, keep your dog away from water sprinklers where the rattlesnakes like to hang out. Snake bites are more common than many people realize. But don’t fret, they’re often more drama than trauma, though always do require a trip to the vet.


The Scoop: 

Read the full article at WebVet.com to learn more about these common pet injuries – what to expect and when a trip to the vet is necessary.

Originally published June 2009; reviewed and updated June 2016.