First Aid For Pets 101

firstaid

First aid for pets is something every pet parent should know. We all hope we’ll never have to use the skills, but they are very important skills to learn! Your pet could choke on their food, fall on a sharp object, or even suffer a seizure. Knowing how to render first aid gives you the skills you need to keep your pets alive until you can reach the veterinarian.
The American Veterinary Medical Association has a comprehensive guide to some of the basic first aid procedures you will need to know as a pet parent. They also offer resources about the Animal Poison Control Center and Household Hazards.
If your pet is choking, they may exhibit the following symptoms: pawing at their muzzle, difficulty breathing, choking sounds, coughing, blue tinged lips, gums or tongue. Always use caution with a choking pet as they are usually panicked and won’t react normally to being handled. If you r pet is choking and can still breathe, get them to a veterinarian immediately. If they can’t, look into their mouth to see if the object is visible. If you can see it, try to remove it with tweezers or pliers, careful not to push the object further down their throat. If you can’t see it, don’t delay and get your pet to a vet as quickly as possible. If you can’t remove it and/or your pet collapses, place your hands on either size of their rib cage and apply firm, quick pressure. You can also lay your pet on their side and strike their rib cage with the palm of your hand 3 or 4 times. Keep repeating this until the object comes out or you arrive at the veterinarian’s office.
If your pet has a cut or other wound externally, you can treat it according to its size. If it is a small cut, you can safely treat it at home. Clean the wound, apply an antiseptic cream like Neosporin and keep the wound as clean as possible. Small cuts on the pads of the feet may require veterinary attention due to their location. Watch the cut for signs of infection until it heals, applying Neosporin as often as your pet will let you.
If the cut is large, and the bleeding is severe, apply a thick pad of gauze and apply pressure to stop the bleeding. Then immediately transport your pet to the veterinarian for treatment.
In the case of a seizure, there isn’t much you can do during. Keep them away from any objects that might injure them, like furniture, but don’t restrain them. Time the seizure, take a video if you can and when it ends keep them warm and quiet. Contact your veterinarian, especially if it is their first-ever seizure.
Check the AVMA’s website (https://www.avma.org/public/EmergencyCare/Pages/Basic-Pet-First-Aid-Procedures.aspx) for a full look at some basic first aid procedures for your pet. Remember, whenever you are experiencing a medical emergency with your pet, call your vet’s office!

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June 10th, 2016 by Kathleen Kintz | Posted in: Cats, Dogs, Ferrets, Pet Health

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