Everyone who shares a home with a pet should have a basic pet first-aid kit on hand.
An ideal pet first aid kit includes items that you will be comfortable using and will cause no harm to your pet.
First aid kit items should be stored in an easy-to-open, transportable box with a handle. A plastic box works well. Clearly label the box “Pet First Aid Kit” and store it in an accessible area. If you often drive with your pet, prepare a duplicate kit to keep in your car.
Mark the expiration date of first aid kit items that have a shelf life with a permanent pen and replace them before they expire. Marking them will serve as a reminder to check the date, as well as make them easy to spot.
If an emergency should occur where there’s more than one person on site, let the person most trained in first aid handle injuries. This is especially true if the pet’s parent is too emotional to make decisions.
Before and after you or anyone else administers first aid to a pet, wash your hands in hot water to avoid infection. Be very careful, any pet in pain will bite or scratch; even gentle pets will bite or scratch when in pain. Consider using a muzzle when dealing with wounded pets.
Keep in mind that the purpose of administering first aid is to stabilize a pet until he or she can be brought to a veterinarian. If the incident occurs away from home (beyond traveling distance to your regular veterinarian), having contact information for a local emergency veterinary clinic with you can save your pet’s life. Add your veterinarian and emergency clinic’s address to your GPS, so you can easily access it in an emergency.
In case of an emergency, are you prepared to help your dog or cat until you can reach the veterinarian? To be on the safe side, stock up on these easy-to-find items.
- Veterinarians Contact Information
- Rolls of 2 & 3 inch gauze: To wrap wounds or use as a safety muzzle.
- Gauze pads in variety of sizes: For cleaning injuries.
- Non Stick Bandages
- Betadine Solution or Calendula Ticture Liquid: For wound healing
- Antibiotic Salve
- Hydrogen Peroxide: To clean wounds. To induce vomiting- do this only when your vet has advised because your dog has ingested something poisonous(not to be used in cats).
- Tweezers: For removing objects from skin or paws.
- Scissors: For cutting hair and bandages
- 5 ml Syringe: To administer oral medication.
- Glove: to help protect you and keep the wound sanitary
- Muzzle: To prevent your dog from biting you or chewing an injury while in pain.
- E Collar: Available in a variety of sizes, this opaque or clear plastic, cone-shaped protector attaches to your pet’s collar and can be found at veterinary clinics and pet stores. Prevents your pet from accessing a wound or injury.
- Ice Pack: To reduce swelling or pain
- Digital Thermometer: to find out if your pet is running a fever.
- First Aid Book: Ask your veterinarian for a reference or to teach you basic first aid.
- Styptic Powder: Used to control nail bleeds when you have cut in to the Quick.
- Sterile Saline Eye Wash: If your dog gets debris or a harmful substance in his eyes, you won’t have time to get him to the vet before serious damage to his eyes occurs. Flushing his eyes out with sterile saline solution could prevent long-term damage.
- Medications. There are a few over-the-counter medications that are safe to use in a variety of emergency situations. Talk with your veterinarian about which medications would be appropriate for your pet’s first aid kit.
- Treats: Don’t forget the treats! It’s a great way to calm and distract an injured pet. This is especially helpful during bandaging, but really can help in any stress-filled first aid situation.
- Collar & Leash.
HELPFUL HOUSEHOLD ITEMS
In addition to your first aid kit, several household items can be helpful in case of emergency. A blanket or large towel can be used as a stretcher to transport an injured pet.