As every devoted dog owner and professional groomer knows, your pets are more than animals to you — they’re family. That’s exactly why you want to prepare for any emergency situations that could arise. What if you’re walking your dog and another animal attacks? How do you respond if a pet you’re grooming swallows a cleaning tool and starts choking? What supplies should you keep in a dog first-aid kit, and why? Knowing the answers to these questions can give you peace of mind that you’re prepared for the unexpected. They may also help you save an animal’s life when disaster strikes.
With that in mind, here’s a look at some basic dog first-aid tips:
- Have a first-aid kit on hand. Because you never know when an accident can occur, always be prepared with proper supplies. Keep a first-aid kit in your car and another in your home or dog business. In it, include supplies such as bandages, non-adhesive dressings, surgical tape, gauze, blunt-ended scissors and a thick, absorbent towel such as The Absorber®. Alternatively, you may want to purchase a dog first-aid kit online, supplementing it with anything it lacks.
- Isolate your pet from danger. As soon as you realize your pet has been harmed in any way, your first priority needs to be getting it away from danger. Find someone to help you, if needed, and move your pet to a stable location. You may want to create an impromptu stretcher with a large piece of wood covered by a towel or blanket.
- Keep your dog still. In the event of injury, keep your pet from moving as much as possible. This is because movement could make broken bones worse. Once you’ve put your dog in a secure location, keep it warm and still.
- Apply pressure to bleeding wounds. If your animal is bleeding, apply pressure to the wound to slow blood loss.
- Dislodge object if dog is choking. In cases where your pet is choking, try to dislodge whatever is in its throat with your finger. If that won’t work, try rapping on your dog’s back in a sort of modified Heimlich maneuver.
- Use CPR if pet isn’t breathing. Because the best way to help a dog that isn’t breathing is through pet CPR, it’s a good idea to take canine first-aid classes now, long before your pet is injured. It’s crucial to know what you’re doing so you don’t unintentionally harm the animal while trying to help.
- Call the vet. Call your veterinarian or the veterinarian hospital to relay what’s happened to your pet and know what to do next — whether or not that means going to the hospital.
- Transport your pet carefully. If you need to go to the pet hospital, be careful when moving your animal. If at all possible, get help. Then, try to keep your pet still in transition — use an impromptu stretcher, if necessary. Have one person drive and one person stay near the pet — applying pressure to any wounds.
When it comes to dog first aid, training for emergencies can help you stay calm even when disaster strikes. Follow the tips above to gear up for whatever might happen — and stock your dog first-aid kit with the right products. To be prepared with the best, most absorbent dog towel in the industry, order The Absorber® Dog Lover’s Towel online today!