First aid is a way to help your pet in an emergency, so anyone who sees the injury or trauma first can help. Your veterinarian can provide you with basic first-aid training, which will come in handy in an emergency.
Always keep in mind that your pet should receive immediate veterinary care following any first-aid treatment. However, if your dog sustains serious injuries, having a dog first aid kit will allow you, as the owner, to administer first aid before taking them to the veterinarian.
Although first aid treatment is not a replacement for veterinary care, it may save your pet’s life until it is treated by a veterinarian.
Call your veterinarian, explain the nature of the illness or injury, and inquire about first aid advice.
In this post, we will discuss some basic dog first aid tips at home.
Include these items in your dog’s first aid kit:
- Bandages: a roll of self-adhesive or crepe bandage (5 cm wide)
- Conforming/open-weave bandages (2.5 cm wide)
- Blunt-ended scissors, preferably curved
- A box of sterile absorbent gauze
- An Elizabethan collar
- A box of cotton wool
- Surgical sticky tape
- A thick towel
- Some non-adhesive absorbent dressings (5 cm x 5 cm) to cover open wounds
- For a bleeding dog
Maintain the dog’s calm demeanor. Put a bandage on tightly. If necessary, substitute with a towel or some clothing. Apply a second, more secure layer if blood is seeping through.
Use a tourniquet only in extreme cases. Put a pad firmly on the wound and hold it in place if you can’t bandage it. Get right to the veterinarian.
Apply a non-adhesive dressing to the wound and cover it with cotton swabs or bandages if you have them. After that, cover it with cotton wool. Add another cotton bandage to cover this.
Using surgical tape, adhere this to the hair at the top and cover the entire thing with an adhesive bandage or tape.
Elastoplast should not be applied to the dog’s hair. The foot should be bandaged as well, or else it may swell up. A bandage should never be left on for more than 24 hours.
- For a dog involved in a fight
If your dog appears shocked, dull, or distressed following a fight, contact the veterinarian. If not, examine the wound. If your pet sustains head or body puncture wounds, you should see a veterinarian right away.
Unless the injury is severe or very painful, limb injuries may not require immediate treatment; however, the dog should be taken to the veterinarian within 24 hours for antibiotics.
- Dogs with burns and scalds
Apply cold water to the affected area for at least five minutes before calling a veterinarian. Applying ointments or creams is not recommended; however, if getting to the veterinarian will take some time, you can apply a dressing that has been soaked in saline. Warm the patient up.
- Dogs with heat stroke
If your dog is distressed and panting heavily on a warm or hot day, especially if the dog has been playing or exercising, is overweight, or has a short nose (like a boxer), think of heatstroke!
The dog should be placed somewhere cool, preferably in a draft. Wet the coat with warm water (cold water slows heat loss by contracting blood vessels in the skin) and call the vet. You can give them a little bit of water.
- Dog having a fit
If your dog is having a fit, you should not try to hold or comfort it because doing so will stimulate the dog and make the fit last longer.
Reduce noise and darken the room. In order to prevent the dog from being injured, move items, particularly anything electrical, away from the dog. Put cushions on the furniture. Contact the vet.
- Dogs with swollen tummies
If this happens suddenly, it needs to be treated seriously, especially if the dog is a deep-chested breed like a boxer or mastiff.
Additionally, attempts to vomit, gulp, and saliva dribbling are possible. It could indicate a stomach twist that threatens life. Call the veterinarian right away; do not wait.
- Dogs with eye injuries
Apply a wet dressing; don’t rub or scratch; and call the vet if the eye is bulging out of its socket. If chemicals have entered the eye, flush it several times with water, preferably from an eye dropper, and contact the veterinarian.
- For electric-shocked dogs
Avoid approaching if a high-voltage supply is involved. Make a police report. Turn off the power first in the house. If this is impossible, you might be able to push the dog away from the power source with a dry, non-metallic object like a broom handle.
Give resuscitation if the patient has stopped breathing. Call the vet right away.
- For poisoned dogs
Try to locate the substance’s packaging and bring it with you when you call the vet. Try to identify the plant if it is suspected of having been chewed.