Animal Bite - Antibiotic Prescribing

Doses are oral and for adults unless otherwise stated. Visit the Health Products Regulatory Authority (HPRA) website for detailed drug information (summary of product characteristics and patient information leaflets). Dosing details, contraindications and drug interactions can also be found in the Irish Medicines Formulary (IMF) or other reference sources such as British National Formulary (BNF) / BNF for children (BNFC). See guidance on dosing in children for quick reference dosage/weight guide. Refer to drug interactions table for detailed drug interactions for all antimicrobials. Note extensive drug interactions for clarithromycin, fluoroquinolones, azole antifungals and rifampicin. Many antibiotics increase the risk of bleeding with anticoagulants.

Note additional warnings for clarithromycin and fluoroquinolones

Comments from Expert Advisory Committee

  • Surgical toilet most important.
  • Assess tetanus and rabies risk.
Antibiotic prophylaxis advised for:
  • puncture wound involving hand, foot, face, joint, tendon, ligament
  • immunocompromised
  • diabetic patients
  • elderly patients
  • asplenic patients


See guidance on dosing in children for quick reference dosage/weight guide.

Treatment Dose TX Duration
co-amoxiclavB- 625 mg TDS 7 days
If penicillin allergic metronidazole
PLUS doxycycline
200-400 mg TDS
100 mg BD
7 days

We recommend patients use the website developed by HSE/ICGP/IPU partnership for tips on how to get better from common infections without using antibiotics, what you can do for yourself or a loved one and when to seek help.

Reviewed June 2016