I often have people ask me for advice on what they can do at home for their pets if something happens and they can’t make it to the vet right away. There are some simple things you can put together and make your own little first aid kit for your pets to keep with you when you are out hiking, traveling, ect
Always do your best to keep your most up to date vet records with you, that way if an injury were to occur and you need to go to a vet you are not necessarily familiar with you have those records with you. Also keep a list of what specific medications your pet is taking, both prescribed and over the counter (such as supplements). It is a good idea to keep these in a water proof bag or container, just in case. Many vet clinics also have the ability to e-mail records. I always keep a copy of the dog and cat’s records on my phone as well.
Always keep water with you. Just like you would carry around water for yourself keep a bottle or two of water with a small dish so you can keep your pet hydrated. They now make excellent silicone bowels that collapse and fit in small spaces. This is what we keep with us so we always have a water dish. It can also be used to flush and clean out wounds.
This is great for nail trims when you cut the nail back to short, but it can also be used to stop bleeding in small cuts. Some brands also have Benzocaine in it, which helps numb the area. This stuff is messy, but if you have a wound that it bleeding, it can help.
These should be used together and can be used for larger bleeding wounds, or to stabilize an injury. Always use the cast padding first on the skin and then wrap over the cast padding with the vet wrap, as vet wrap is self constricting and if put on by itself and too tight can cut off circulation.
Make sure this is properly labeled as the PET Thermometer because you do need to take the temperature rectally. It may also be nice to keep some petroleum gel or lubricant for this purpose as well. Both dog and cats temperatures should not be above 103 degrees F or below 99 degrees F. If the temperature is off you need to get them to a vet as soon as possible. DO NOT give any medications to try and lower a fever unless specifically directed by your veterinarian.
This can be given in the case of an allergic reaction. You MUST call your Vet for the proper dosage though. Although a very safe medication, you want to make sure that it is the proper thing to do in the situation and that you give the proper amount. Typically the best size of medication to have is the 25 mg tablet, this can be broken in half if needed. For cats and dogs under 10 lbs the children’s liquid (12.5 mg/5ml) would be a good option. If you get the liquid make sure to have an oral syringe for easier dosing.
Karo Syrup or Honey
This can be useful if your pet’s blood sugar goes too low and they go into hypoglycemic shock. This is especially important for VERY small animals and diabetic pets. It can be rubbed on the gums for a quick sugar pick me up, as you are getting to a vet clinic.
This can be used to induce vomiting if your pet has eaten something toxic. Again it is important that you call and speak to a vet before you give it because there is a proper dosage to give. There are also some caustic materials, such as bleach, that could do more harm coming out than staying in. Your vet can give you information on the proper procedure for what ever your pet got into. It also may be handy to have an oral syringe that has Milliliter markings on it to make it easier to measure out the dose and give it.
Leash and/or Pet carrier
I always have a leash in my car, just in case ours were to break or I find an animal running loose that I need to restrain. It also comes in hand to have a pet carrier with you when able, especially with cats and smaller critters. You can have a perfectly well trained dog, but sometimes you need to have them on a leash, especially if hurt and/or scared.
Ideally these are on your pets at all times, especially if you are away from home. If your pet every becomes lost people need a way to contact you in order to reunite you. This is also why I think that Microchips are important because collars and harnesses can break and fall off, where as a Microchip is ALWAYS on your pet. Make sure all info on I.D. tags and Microchips are up to date.
This is just a basic idea of what you should carry with you when traveling with your pet, or even just supplies to have at home! Have you started a first aid kit for your pets? What do you include in yours?
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