Assemble a Canine First Aid and Care Kit
Edited by Mian Sheilette Ong, Eng, Lynn, Jen M and 1 other
There are times when your loyal and furry companion experiences a medical emergency that could be helped by a first aid kit. The problem is that most dog owners do not have a first aid kit for their dogs. This leaves them clueless as to what instruments to use if ever their dogs are injured, poisoned, stressed, or overwhelmed by the change in weather. Since you are a responsible dog owner, it is about time you assemble a canine first aid and care kit. As you do this, you have to take note of the common medical emergencies or special situations that might involve specific items you should include. Optimal health for your dog is your main goal. If your dog is always in good shape, you will have no problems at all. If you have a first aid kit for humans at home, it is practical for you to have a first aid and care kit for your four-legged family member as well.
The Importance of Canine First Aid
History has been slapped in the face with so many disasters - both natural and man-made. It is true that many human civilizations have suffered, but under the microscope, small lives suffer fates worse than death. Dogs are always in areas that man inhabits. When emergencies come, whether it's a big or small, they are the ones who are left helpless. Our four-legged companion depends on man for everything, including health care and safety. They should always be included when it comes to preparing for dire health emergencies. As a responsible dog owner, assembling a canine first aid and care kit shows that you indeed include your dog as part of your life and as part of your family. With that emergency kit, you may be able to save your dog's life until proper veterinary help arrives.
What to Do In Case There is a Dire Emergency in the Area
Anything these days is unpredictable - weather, people, and even situations. To take control of your safety, you have to be alert and aware. This also holds true for your dog. Below are some of the things you can do in case there is a dire emergency in your area:
- 1Plan. In case of an emergency evacuation, you should know where your dog can go with you. There may be a point when everyone in your entire area may need to go someplace safe. Think of a location where dogs are allowed to stay. You may have to decide to place them somewhere exclusive for dogs such as pet hotels, kennels, or pet hospitals. Determine your best options and see if you can access them on short notice.Advertisement
- 2Be ready. You have to maintain your presence of mind, especially if you know that an evacuation can happen anytime. Have your car filled with gas or at least have a container of gas ready. Have some cash in your wallet. Pack your emergency packs. Pack your dog's emergency packs. Know what should be in your dog's first aid and care pack as well. It's a matter of thinking straight and knowing what to do despite the urgency of the situation.Advertisement
- 3Be calm. There is no use panicking during an emergency. If your dog senses that you are in a panic, you will have a hard time pacifying your fur-baby. The worst thing that could happen is that he or she may run away. Staying calm will help you and your dog overcome the emergency.
- 4Know what to do with what you have. Having a first aid and care kit for your dogs not enough. You have to know what to do with what you have packed in it. Even if it is mostly your personal selection of items for your dog, be sure that they are usable and could last for days.
How to Assemble a Canine First Aid and Care Kit
Putting a canine first aid and care kit together should not be that difficult. You just have to know your dog well enough to know what you should pack. You should have a kit in your vehicle and in your home. Below are items you should include in your kit:
- 1Waterproof container. It should be a waterproof container in anticipation of a terrible calamity or accident. Use permanent ink in writing the phone numbers of the nearest dog emergency hospital and your vet. Also include the poison control numbers, your phone number, your address, and your name.
- Tweezers with a slanted tip
- Sterile needles for tick head and splinter removal
- Bulb syringe for force-feeding or flushing wounds
- Syringe (10cc) for giving medications
- Tongue depressor for mouth inspection
- Nail clippers
- Rubber gloves
- Disposable razor for shaving off the fur in case there's an open wound to be treated
- Digital rectal thermometer (normal temperature for dogs is 100.5-102.5 degrees Fahrenheit)
- Disposable safety razor (for shaving fur from around a wound)
- Paper towels
- At least two towels
- Thermal blanket
- Nylon stockings or bandannas for securing an injured ear or muzzling
- Waterproof matches
- Dog socks or booties for paw protection
- Cloth strips
- Rolled gauze for muzzling, stabilizing joints, and bandaging
- 3 by 3-inch sterile gauze
- Rolled cotton
- Cotton balls
- First aid adhesive tape
- Waterproof and self-clinging bandages
- Hot and cold pack
- Anti-bacterial pads or wipes
- Bottled water
- Water bowl
- Tick scoop for removing ticks
- Slicker brush
- Sugar treats for hypoglycemia
- Panalog wound cream
- Betadine swabs
- Penlight for pupil assessment
- Hemostat for clamping blood vessels
- Nexaban skin glue to close wounds
Important Medications and Solutions you should Include
The following are some of the important solutions and medications that you should include in your canine first aid and care kit:
- 1Hydrogen peroxide (3 percent USP). This disinfects and cleans wounds. It also induces vomiting. Check your hydrogen peroxide's expiration to make sure you have a fresh solution all the time.
- 2Activated charcoal (Tablet form). This absorbs toxic substances.
- 3Neosporin. This is an antibiotic ointment for treating wounds.
- 4Betadine. You should have this antiseptic medicine to prevent wound infection.
- 5Rubbing alcohol (ethyl). You can apply this to your dog's skin as a cooling agent for countering fever and heat stroke. It also breaks down oils in the fur. It can also serve as a drying agent for skin folds and toe gaps. This isn't an ideal antiseptic because it can damage the skin.
- 6Petroleum jelly. This is used for taking rectal temperatures much more easily.
- 7Saline solution (sterile). Use this for flushing wounds and eyes.
- 8Bag balm. You use this for treating injured paw pads.
- 9Eye ointment. Choose one that doesn't have cortisone.
- 10Epsom salt. This mixture is used for bathing itchy skin and paws. If you mix 1 teaspoon of Epsom salt in about 2 cups of water (warm), you could draw out infection.
- 11Artificial tears/gel. This is used for lubricating the eyes, usually after you flush them.
- 12Styptic powder. Use this to stop bleeding in toenails.
- 13Baking soda. This compound is used in soothing various skin problems.
- 14Milk of magnesia and Pepto Bismol. Use this to treat poisoning and to soothe upset stomachs.
- 15Benadryl. Use the plain variety for treating allergic episodes, stings, and bug bites.
- 16Essences. These can help relieve stress. You can put a few drops in the crate or bedding to eliminate or reduce anxiety.
- 17Aspirin. You can give Aspirin to your dog but consult your vet first. Give a Tablet for every 60 lbs. Never use ibuprofen or acetaminophen.
- 18Dish washing liquid. Use this for cleaning up sticky compounds or contaminated skin.
Additional Things to Include in the Kit
Your dog is a valuable member of your family. Dogs will always do whatever it takes to keep you safe. It's only appropriate that you return the favor the best way you can.
- 1High quality dog food. Prepare three days' worth of dog food. A vacuum sealer will also help keep the food fresh longer if there is no refrigeration available.
- 2Collar with proper identification. Your dog might lose the collar and tag he or she has on. It's better to have an extra one just in case.
- 3Materials for litter. You can pack newspaper shavings, a poop scoop, and sanitizing sprays. Your dog won't be able to go out all the time during an emergency so you have to be ready.
- 4Toys. Don't forget your dog's favorite toys. This can relieve their stress in a chaotic, unstable environment.
- Make sure you contain everything in an easy-to-carry bag.
- Always be ready to carry your dog in case the situation calls for it.
- Be sure to keep your dog calm.
- Designate someone in the family to hold the canine first aid and care kit. * If you're alone, make sure you have a portable version of it so you can easily carry it with you.