Most homes have first aid kits prepared in case of an emergency with you or a loved one, but it rarely crosses a pet owner’s mind to have a first aid kit prepared for your dog or puppy. You never know when disaster will strike, so it’s always important to be prepared! In this blog, we will talk about essential items to have in your home and/or vehicle as a part of your animal first aid kit.
WHAT ITEMS SHOULD I HAVE?
There are a variety of wound sprays you can find at your local pet store, Amazon, etc. that will come in handy should your pet ever get cut or scratched and need a sterilization and cleaning tool.
BANDAGES/GAUZE & TAPE
Do NOT use adhesive bandages on your pets such as Band-Aids, as these can stick to the animal’s fur. Self-cling bandages also work in instances where you need a wound wrapped fast, as this material can stick to itself without clinging to your pet’s fur. In most cases, gauze and tape can be used to secure wounds on your dogs. In instances of extreme emergency—if no gauze or other bandages can be found—clean rags, socks, and items of clothing can be used.
Gauze, tape, and rags/items of clothing are not always easy to tear. A pair of scissors can come in handy during a tough situation where materials need to be cut. There are also specially made scissors with soft edges to prevent you from accidentally harming your pet during a bandage removal/application.
EYE WASH & EAR WASH
If your dog ever gets some type of contaminant in its eyes or ears, it’s good to have a sterile saline eye wash or ear wash handy to flush out the pollutants. This can help prevent burning, stinging, itching, or more.
Dogs scratch and lick at infected or injured areas which can exacerbate the problem. Cones help prevent this by not allowing them to reach the problem areas.
We all know dogs tend to eat things they shouldn’t. In the scenarios where you discover your dog has eaten something poisonous or bad for them, hydrogen peroxide can be used to induce vomiting and rid their stomachs of any toxic substances, if you’re worried about getting to the veterinarian in time. Make sure to call your local veterinarian to ensure you’re giving the proper amount for your size of animal. In addition, still take your animal to see the vet following this treatment as it will need to be seen by a professional to ensure no other damage has occurred.
While it may not seem important, if your animal needs a wound flushed, burn soothed, paw soaked, or drink of water on a hot day, you want to have water handy. It’s smart to keep a gallon of water in your car or near your pet first aid kit should any of these scenarios arise.
PAPERS AND MEDICATIONS
For animals with special needs such as diabetic dogs, dogs with allergies, or any other diseases, it’s important to have their medications handy in case one of these problems flares up while you’re home or travelling with your pet. Ask your local veterinarian what medications you should have on hand for your specific animal.
Animals can become hostile or aggressive when injured. To protect yourself as well as your pet, keep blankets, a muzzle, or anything else that can be used as a restraint on hand to secure them in place.
OTHER ITEMS TO CONSIDER
- Antibiotic ointment
- Rectal thermometer
- Cotton balls
- Pet wipes
- Dish soap
- Dog treats
- Contact card with pet poison hotline number, veterinarian number, emergency pet hospital number, etc.
It’s important to understand that having a first aid kit for your dog does not mean that they do not need to see a veterinarian immediately after its use. You should call your veterinarian or go to an emergency vet clinic if your animal has been injured or requires any type of treatment.