So you need a first aid kit for pets, right? After all, you have a first aid kit for the people in your life. Animals become injured and ill, too, and deserve care.
A good first aid kit for pets doesn’t have to be huge and overwhelming. In fact, most of the items are probably in your regular first aid kit. (Even so, a separate one for each pet is going to save a lot of headache. Take some time and look over this list to see what you should be including in your kit.
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This post is a continuation of Bug Out Bag for Pets, and the content was provided by a reader who wants all of you to keep you pets safe. So if you haven’t read that yet, you probably should. (I’ll wait.) Now that you’ve read it, let’s see what you need to include in your First Aid Kit for Pets.
A good, easy to understand first aid book like The First Aid Companion for Dogs and Cats. Ideally, attend a pet first aid course. Some pet stores have them, but your local Red Cross may also have them.
Adhesive tape to secure bandages and splints
Alcohol swabs to sterilize instruments or small areas of skin
Enteric-coated Aspirin to relieve pain. This is for dogs only. Do not give to any other animal except dogs. Find out from your veterinarian the correct dosage and how often to administrate for each size dog you have. Put this on the species card. Do not give any animal Ibuprofen, acetaminophen or Naprocin
Scissors with blunt ends
There are also vet bandages like these, which don’t stick to fur or hair, and these are very wise addition to your first aid kit for pets. Be careful to not put them on too tightly. Check your pet’s paws often for warmth. If the paw gets cooler the bandage should be loosened as the circulation may be affected.
Benadryl for insect bites or stings. Get instructions on dosage and how often to administrate from your veterinarian FOR EACH PET. Be sure to add this to the species card(s).
Betadine antiseptic solution to clean wounds. This is an antiseptic used in hospitals and is available in large containers as well as smaller, more convenient ones.
Blood-clotting gel or powder or styptic powder to stop bleeding
Cold pack — the type that becomes cold when you fold the pack in half. This is to prevent or reduce swelling with a sprain or strain and to cool off pet if over heated)
Bottles of clean water to treat burns
Sheet, blanket or towel to warm a pet in shock or to use as emergency stretcher
Thermometer – non-mercury rectal digital. Keep extra batteries in your kit. CALL YOUR VET for normal temperature ranges for each type of pet.
Triple antibiotic ointment WITHOUT benzocaine or lidocaine
Tweezers — flat ended (to remove foreign objects)
Sterile saline solution (eye rinse or clean wounds)
Large Syringe without a needle to flush eyes using sterile saline solution or induce vomiting with Hydrogen Peroxide. Do not induce vomiting without consulting your veterinarian or poison control!!
Also include the following information:
Veterinarian’s phone number and hours of operation
Emergency Clinic phone number and how to get there. Mark this information on a map like you do for the shelters. If more than one is available, mark each clinic and have each phone number readily available.
– ASPCA National Animal Poison Control charges $65 per incident and requires a credit card 888-426-4435 (follow up calls are free)
– National Animal Poison Control Center of the University of Illinois charges $20 for the first 5 minutes and $2.95 per minute thereafter 900-680-0000. The fee is charged to your phone
– Pet Poison Helpline, available in Canada, the US and the Caribbean, charges $39 per incident 1-800-213-6680
– Americans can call the Kansas State University Veterinary Hospital for free 1-785-532-5679
Go to the American ASPCA for more info
There you have it – a comprehensive list of the items you need for a Pet First Aid Kit.