first aid for dogs and cats

First Aid for Pets: 5 Lifesaving Techniques Every Owner Should Know

If your animal was in danger, could you handle it?

RODALE NEWS, EMMAUS, PA—Summer is lots of fun for pets as well as their people. But backyard holiday festivities, outdoor hikes, and heat waves can put our companion animals in danger. So it’s a good idea to use some of your summer off-time taking a pet first-aid course, which you can find through your local chapter of the American Red Cross. In the meantime, here are five things all pet owners need to know in order to protect their animals from injury:

1. How to assemble a pet first-aid kit
Keep the following items on hand (many are included in first-aid kits for people):

• Your vet’s phone number, the number for an animal poison-control center, and a copy of your pet’s medical records
• Scissors for clipping hair around wounds, and tweezers for removing ticks and splinters
• Rolled gauze for bandaging, stabilizing joints, or making a muzzle (even gentle pets can bite when they’re scared or in pain)
• Clean towel or blanket (good for immobilizing small dogs and cats)
• Adhesive first-aid tape to keep bandages in place
• Needle-nose pliers to remove foreign objects
• Rectal thermometer and a lubricating agent like mineral oil or petroleum jelly
• Antiseptic soap or Betadine solution
• Epsom salt (mix 1 teaspoon in 2 cups warm water for drawing out infection and bathing itchy paws and skin)
• Milk of Magnesia to absorb poison
• Baking soda to soothe skin irritations
• Cornstarch to stop bleeding of torn toenails

Filed Under: PET CARE

Published on: June 30, 2009

More from our Authors

Ready to turn your tired soil into no-toil garden gold? Learn how you can enjoy bumper crops, less watering and fewer weeds in one easy step.

hydrogen peroxide

Still the most common poison ingestion I see as a veterinarian is rat/mouse anticoagulant poisons. Hydrogen peroxide is safe and works very well (especially in dogs) as long as it is fresh. Old, opened, flat hydrogen peroxide won't foam up well in the stomach and therefore may not induce vomitting. Don't be fooled by those who think "a little poison" won't hurt that big dog. Rodents have developed resistance to these products, necessitating stronger, longer lasting ones (up to 3 weeks). Our pets have not developed this resistance. Once they start bleeding (usually internally-not visible), death can come very quickly.

Start Your Wellness Journey!
Sign up for updates on Rodale Wellness and get your FREE wellness journal to help you find your path to vibrant health. Click here to start your unique journey!

Free Newsletter
Sign up for our FREE newsletters to stay up to date on all of our wellness news.

  The Daily Fix
Useful news and practical tips to help you live a healthy life on a healthier planet.

  Wellness in Action
Find your path to vibrant health, and get your free wellness journal as our thanks!

You may unsubscribe at any time.

Your Privacy Rights. About Us.