Pet First Aid

Although we don’t like to think of about bad things happening to our pets, pet first aid is crucial to have on hand for the times when the unexpected does occur. Know what to do in case of emergencies.

Essential Supplies for Pet First Aid

The first thing you need to do is make a checklist of all the essential pet first aid supplies you will need. You may not come up with everything all at once, but you can keep adding to your supply as you think of things that you might need.

Here is a list of pet first aid supplies to help get you started and some information about what each item can be used for:

  • Gauze/cotton balls – to clean wounds and apply pressure to bleeding wounds
  • Hydrogen peroxide or rubbing alcohol – to cleanse and flush wounds
  • Antibiotic ointment – to keep wounds free of infection
  • Wrapping bandages – to protect wounds from outside elements
  • First aid tape – to wrap bandages securely
  • Nasal aspirator – to clear the nasal or oral passages of mucus, ingested toxins, or choking hazards
  • Rectal thermometer – normal range for dogs: 99 degree to 102.5 degrees, normal range for cats: 100.5 degree to 102.5 degrees
  • Towels – to hold limbs in place in case of broken bones or fractures
  • Ice packs and heat packs – to reduce swelling and initiate the healing process
  • Benadryl – for seasonal allergies or allergic reactions
  • Pepto-Bismol – to help control diarrhea
  • Eye dropper – to initiate feeding when a dog or cat cannot eat on its own, to force ingestion of medication, or to clean wounds
  • Cornstarch – to stop bleeding (usually on the toenails when the quick has been exposed)
  • Tweezers – to remove debris or dirt from an open wound
  • Pedialyte -  to ensure hydration and proper electrolyte balance during dehydration and heat stroke
  • Karo syrup – an anti-shock agent
  • Eye wash solution – for use with irritants or toxins in the eye

You may also want to consider keeping gloves and a muzzle on hand. When you are dealing with open wounds, you are better off to wear gloves while cleaning and caring for them. This way you can ensure that none of the infection is transmitted. The muzzle is good for injured pets that do not want to be handled. It is a natural reaction for a dog or cat to flee from pain, so it possible that the pet could bite in its attempt to flee.

Important Phone Numbers

You should also make sure that your pet first aid kit includes a list of the phone numbers that you may need. In the event of an emergency, you will not have time to search your house or the internet for these contacts. With your pet first aid kit, you should always keep the phone number of your local veterinarian and the Animal Poison Control Center.