First Steps for First Aid for Pets
By Margaret Meier Jones, Animal Wellness Center of Buffalo Valley
We all have that place in our homes where we go when we need first aid for ourselves. Do you have that same confidence on locating your first aid kit for your pet? If you do, that’s great! Go there now and check the expiration dates on all of the contents of the kit. If you do not, the following information will help you create one.
Many over the counter products for people are NOT safe for pets. Recently here at Buffalo Valley Vet Clinic, we had a client call after hours and ask, “Can I just give my pet two Tylenol, watch it, and come in during regular business hours?” We were glad she called before she just administered the medication because dogs can become very sick with Tylenol, and it is fatal to cats! So, while it is important to have the first aid kit organized and handy in the event of an emergency, NEVER give any medication to your pet without first speaking with your veterinarian. We recommend keeping your veterinarian’s contact information in several locations, including inside or taped on top of the first aid kit.
“Alright, Doc, disclaimers aside, what should I buy for this first aid kit?” The following is a list of items you should be sure to include:
Generic Benadryl, or diphenydramine, 25mg TABLET (not capsules)
81mg ASPIRIN (not Tylenol, Advil, or Aliev)
Milk of magnesia or activated charcoal
Generic triple anti-biotic ointment (not cream)
Artificial tear ointment
Saline solution eye rinse
Hydrogen peroxide 3%
Telfa pads of various sizes
Non-stick bandaging “tape” such as Vet-wrap
Cotton swabs and gauze squares
An old pair of nylon dress socks or stockings and/or a slip leash for an emergency makeshift muzzle
Have these items on hand and in a location that is easy for you to access, but where your pet cannot. Your advanced preparation will help your veterinarian guide you with advice that may just one day save your pet’s life.
For further tips and tricks for the best pet first aid kit, check out the following links: