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April is Pet First Aid Month and it’s the perfect time to get your first aid kits prepared. With Summer quickly approaching and the travel season shifting into high-gear, you never know what sort of medical attention might be needed for your four legged family member.
“An estimated 92% of all pets will experience some type of severe emergency situation over the course of their lifetime.” – Pet Place
By far the most common reason that pets pay a visit to the emergency room are for gastrointestinal issues, or rather, diarrhea and vomiting. In the moment it can be difficult to decipher if it’s truly gastrointestinal issues or if your dog ate something they shouldn’t have eaten, which could lead to an obstruction of the intestines or some type of poisoning.
Other reasons for emergency room visits include trauma (hurt while playing or injured by a vehicle), painful red eyes, difficulty breathing, lameness and difficulty while urinating.
Here are some of the items you will want to include in your pet first aid kit are:
- Extra leash
- Ice pack
- Gauze (To wrap wounds)
- Non-Stick Bandages, Towels, strips of clean cloth (Used to control bleeding and protect wounds)
- Adhesive tape (To secure gauze and bandages)
- Milk of magnesia or Activated Charcoal (This is used to absorb poison)
- Hydrogen peroxide 3% (Used to induce vomiting)
- Digital thermometer or Fever thermometer (Used to take temperature must be done rectally)
- Petroleum Jelly (Used to lubricate thermometer)
- Blunt-end scissors (to cut the tape and gauze)
- Disposable gloves (non-latex)
- Eye/Medicine Droppers (Used to give liquids orally or flush out wounds)
- Muzzle (Used to cover pets head, not to be used if vomiting)
- Saline Solution (Used for cleansing wounds. Saline used for Contact lense solution often suffices.)
Instead of building your own pet first aid kit, some people opt to get one that is ready-made for them. Amazon is a good place to start your search. Be advised that not all of them will come with the list we have here, so you may have to add some items to it.
Along with your first aid kit, you’ll want to have some important phone numbers handy. Such as your primary veterinarian, emergency clinic and the animal poison control center (888-426-4435).
For more information on what to include in your Pet First Aid Kit, visit The Humane Society of The United States.