Pet health emergencies always seem to occur at the worst possible time! Usually, in the middle of the night, or over the weekend, when your only option is a very expensive trip to the emergency animal hospital. If you live in a very rural area, your only option may be to wait until the vet opens in town. Being prepared to handle your pet’s health emergencies at home could save your pet’s life, save you some money, and save your pet some needless pain and suffering!
Pet Health Emergencies: What to keep in your pet’s first aid kit.
First aid supplies
Sterile Saline Wound Flush– For flushing the wound of any hair or debris
Bandage Tape – I like to put this over the self adherent bandage to make sure the wound stays covered
Plastic Wrap– for covering open or gaping wounds
An E-Collar-to keep your pet from licking or chewing at a wound, rash, or other irritated area
A blanket or thick towel- can be used to restrain your pet and keep it warm, or use it as a makeshift stretcher if you must move your pet
A Medicine Dropper-for administering liquid medications; pills can also be crushed and dissolved in a tiny bit of water so they can be administered with a dropper if you are having difficulty giving your pet a pill
Over the counter meds:
Dosages and use of medications will vary according to type of pet, weight, and age. Make yourself familiar with the correct medications and dosages for your pet BEFORE something happens. The First Aid Companion For Dogs and Cats is an excellent pet first aid manual to keep with your kit. It will help you handle all kinds of pet health emergencies. It has a full listing of dosages for all the medications listed below, as well as advice on what to do in pet health emergencies. I highly recommend reading it before a pet health emergency happens, and then keeping it in your kit for reference at all times. Keep a note card in your first aid kit that states what your pets correct body temperature and respiration should be, dosages of all medications in your kit, your vet’s contact info, contact info for the closest backup emergency vet for after hours, and the number for poison control. Not all medications are safe for cats! Please do your own research before administering any of these medications to your pet!
Liquid Diphenydramine-for allergic reactions; can also be used as a mild sedative
Buffered Aspirin– for pain and inflammation(DO NOT GIVE TO CATS!)
Dramamine-for car sickness and nausea
Loperamide(Immodium)– for diarrhea
Cortizone Cream-for itching and inflammation, like bug bites, or rashes
Lanacane Cream– for pain and itch; contains anesthetic to numb the affected area
Antibiotic Ointment – to prevent infection
Lubricating Eye Drops – to treat irritated eyes
Electrolyte Solution – to prevent and treat dehydration
Activated Charcoal – administer if you think your pet has ingested something poisonous.