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First Aid Tips for Pet Owners

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Pet owners do everything they can to keep their pets healthy. Despite your efforts, you may encounter situations where your pet’s safety is at risk. Since it’s not possible to prevent every emergency, every pet owner should know how to handle urgent situations to avoid panic. Blue Lake Animal Hospital offers advice for navigating these instances. Here are a few first aid tips that you should know about. 

Assess the Situation

First and foremost, you should remain calm and properly assess the issue. It’s natural to feel stressed when your pet is in a critical situation, but confusion will only delay the care your pet needs. Without startling your pet, observe what the problem is:

  • Is there an injury? There may be a broken bone, bruising, bleeding, and other visible signs. 
  • If you believe your pet may have ingested a poisonous substance, avoid mouth-to-mouth resuscitation since you may also become contaminated. 
  • If there is bleeding, carefully apply gauze or a clean cloth to stop the bleeding.

Take note of anything relevant to the situation, such as whether your pet may have consumed something toxic or if they were in an accident. This helps our veterinarians act fast and administer the correct treatment.

Have First Aid Supplies on Hand

The idea of preparing for an emergency can be overwhelming. If you aren’t sure where to start, try building a pet first aid supply kit. Having these on hand will significantly reduce the stress if your pet was injured or suddenly became sick since you can quickly access the kit.

We suggest having these supplies in your first aid kit:

  • Nonstick bandages or clean strips of towel or cloth
  • Gauze
  • Adhesive tapes
  • Activated charcoal
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Antibiotic ointment or spray
  • Leash
  • Muzzle
  • Rubber gloves
  • Emergency veterinarian contact information

In doing so, you’ll have everything you need in one place rather than frantically searching for the supplies during a high-stress situation. 

Learn How to Safely Handle an Injured or Sick Animal

Pets may act aggressively or be confused when they are injured. Pain can cause your animal to react in unexpected ways, which can lead to bites or scratches. Even if your pet typically has a gentle and calm temperament, approach the situation with caution. 

  • Don’t assume that your pet won’t try to scratch or bite you. When an animal is afraid, it may act in self-defense. 
  • Keep your pet away from your face, and don’t try to hug it. Even though you may wish to comfort your pet, doing so can only increase its fear and pain. 
  • If your dog is not vomiting, a muzzle can lower the risk of injury to you, the veterinarian, and anyone else who may come into contact with your injured dog.
  • Restrain cats and small animals by wrapping them in a soft towel or blanket. Be sure to leave its face uncovered and avoid wrapping too tightly. 
  • Use a pet carrier or box to keep the animal contained while transporting it to a local veterinarian. 

Visit Us for Dependable Veterinary Care

Always remember that first aid is not a substitute for professional care and should be followed up with veterinary assistance. Call Blue Lake Animal Hospital for an appointment.

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