The last thing that most dog owners are thinking about is how to provide first aid treatment for their pet in the event of an accident or injury. However, pet injuries do happen and having all the basic supplies is a great way to avoid confusion and panic. There are commercially available dog first aid kits that are great for your vehicle, home or even a backpack, but you can also put one together on your own for a small price.
Almost any type of sealed container will work
for an in home first aid kit. A small clear plastic storage bin with a handle is a great idea, easy to grab when needed but also durable enough to take with you in your car, camper or on a boat. For backpack types of first aid kits a Ziploc bag will work however a small canvas or plastic zipped pouch or bag is also a great idea.
The bag or case does need to be sealable so dirt and dust or mold and contaminants cannot get onto the dressings and bandages. A simple type of first aid kit for people or even a tackle box makes a good choice since they are typically waterproof and have a durable seal.
If your dog has any type of medical condition that requires medication such as allergies, arthritis, diabetes, or other chronic health conditions carrying a small amount of prescription medication is a good idea. It needs to be kept in a sealed prescription bottle or other safe carrying case and should be clearly marked. Never use human medication on dogs unless instructed to by your vet. Having a small bottle of human aspirin in the kit is a good general pain killer but never give your dog Tylenol or any products containing acetaminophen.
Include antibacterial spray that can be applied to any lesions or cuts as well as some Betadine disinfectant for cleaning larger injuries. Antibiotic cream, a sterile eye wash solution for eye injuries as well as some cortisone spray for bug bites and other types of skin irritations. When camping or on long trips activated charcoal to handle any possible issues with the dog eating poison or toxic materials is a must.
Tools And Equipment
You can really add to a list of tools and basic surgical types of equipment in your kit, but if you stick to the basics you will be able to deal with most emergency situations. You will need to include a penlight, magnifying glass, tweezers, surgical scissors, small needle nosed pliers or small hemostats, and small and large sized tongue depressors that can be used around wounds and to stabilize body parts on small breed dogs. Disposable gloves and an eye dropper are also very helpful in many situations.
Adding different types of bandages and dressings is a good idea. A roll of gauze is a must for leg wounds as well as for muzzling the dog if necessary for yours and his protection. Cotton swabs and cotton balls, a few Q-tips, styptic sticks, sterile square gauze of different sizes, non-stick bandages, first aid tape and rolled bandages are the basics. If you can add a roll of Vetwrap, a self bonding tape that is perfect for stabilizing the feet and legs and securing bandages in place over large areas of the body.
You can always add to the kit as you come across items, but the above list will certainly see you through most common emergency first aid situations. Always carry your vet's number in the kit as well as the numbers for a 24 hour vet service in the area you are traveling or living.
Article provided by Kate Cooper of Oh My Dog Supplies, where you can find a incredible variety of stuffed dog toys online.