(HealthDay News) -- No one is able to prevent all animal bites, so it's important to know what to do if you are bitten by a dog or cat.
The American Academy of Family Physicians offers this advice:
Carefully wash the area with soap and warm water.
Stop any bleeding by applying a clean towel.
Cover the wound with a sterile bandage.
Elevate the area above the heart to reduce swelling and the risk of infection.
Apply antibiotic ointment twice daily until healed.
If appropriate, call your doctor and local authorities.