Garanimals Blog

April 6th, 2011 at 1:00 am

Pet First Aid

April is Pet First Aid Awareness Month. Yeah, I know, they’ve got a month for everything, but not many people think about first aid for their pets. We schedule regular vet visits for our dog, Hazel, but if I wasn’t married to a pet-store owner, I’m not sure I would know what to do in an emergency.

One thing not to do is go online.
The time to prepare for an emergency is before it happens. In case of an emergency, call your veterinarian immediately. The American Animal Hospital Association offers some excellent resources, including this great article on pet first aid. The first thing you should do is locate an animal hospital that offers 24-hour emergency care (use the AAHA locator tool to find one near you). Write the number on a card and post it somewhere visible (we keep it on the fridge, with all our other emergency numbers).

You should also have a pet first aid kit in your home. You can purchase one at your local pet store or make your own.

Most pet care is common sense, but some things people only find out the hard way. Here are few important things to remember:

• Summer is coming and a hot car can quickly become a death trap for an animal. Never lock your pet in a car.
Chocolate can be fatal to animals, even in small amounts.
• Birds have relatively little blood and no clotting agents, so bird owners should have clotting gel, styptic powder or other cauterizing agents in their first aid kits. Due to the bleeding danger, it’s best to leave feather and nail clipping to trained professionals.
• Many house and garden plants can be toxic to pets. Check these guidelines for raising plants and pets together.
• Never treat your pet with human medicines, which can be toxic to animals. Always consult your veterinarian before you medicate your pet.
• Place a fire emergency pet sign where it will be visible to rescue workers. Indicate how many pets you have and where they are most likely to be. You can order them free online from the ASPCA or make your own.

Your pet emergency plan will vary depending on what kind of animal you own, but take a few minutes now, when it’s not an emergency, to make your plan and practice it with the whole family.

Susan Bearman also writes at Two Kinds of People, Mike&Ollie: 24-weekers Who Beat the Odds and The Animal Store Blog, as well as being a regular contributor to The Chicago Moms and Technorati.




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1 Comment on 'Pet First Aid'

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  1. Knew choc wasnt good but will read your other stuff.Thank’s Rob


    6 Apr 11 at 11:04 am

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