A first aid kit is something that we, as humans, understand the value of when it comes to our health. In case of an emergency it contains crucial supplies that could potentially save our lives until we’re able to receive professional medical care.
First aid kits are equally as important when it comes to pets. As a pet owner, it’s your responsibility to make sure you have basic materials on hand in the event of an unexpected emergency.
You can begin making your kit by purchasing one intended for humans and adding pet-specific items to it. Another option is to buy a pre-assembled kit from your local pet store or catalog.
However, building your own may be the best strategy. Different species of animals, age groups, and pet lifestyles will have different first-aid needs. You can customize your kit to include items to match and search for specific supplies online or at a supply store. Plus, it’s relatively simple to start your own. We’ve put together a list of the essentials you should start collecting right away.
1. Phone numbers
It’s better to know important phone numbers before you need them, but if they’re in this kit you won’t have to waste time looking them up. On an index card or post-it note you should include the contact information of your:
- Local animal emergency hospital
- Animal Poison Control Center
Store your pet’s medical records, vaccination history, and other important records in a waterproof container or bag.
3. Leash or pet carrier
To transport your pet.
To prevent biting and further injury. Do not muzzle your pet if they are vomiting, choking, coughing, or having other difficulties breathing.
Having treats on hand can be super helpful in calming or distracting a pet during any stress-filled situation.
These will help control bleeding and keep wounds clean until they can be treated by a vet. The best kind to invest in are the self-cling version so they have the ability to stretch and stick to themselves, but not fur. Non-adhesive bandages are also easier to remove.
For wrapping wounds. Additionally, gauze can be used to muzzle an injured pet.
3. Adhesive tape
Use to secure gauze or bandages.
Use them to cut tape, gaze, or any other type of material. Scissors with a blunted blade have the ability to easily slip between fur and the material without cutting your pet’s skin.
5. Digital thermometer
The temperature of your pet should not fall under 99.5 or over 102.5 degrees fahrenheit. Thermometers must be inserted rectally. To make insertion easier, include petroleum jelly or another lubricant in the first aid kit.
6. Milk of magnesia or hydrogen peroxide
Milk of magnesia absorbs poison and hydrogen peroxide causes vomiting. Always contact your veterinarian or poison control center before inducing vomiting or treating your pet for poison. Some mild toxins that are used to induce regurgitation can cause more harm if they are vomited back up. Furthermore, cats should never ingest hydrogen peroxide.
7. Sterile saline solution
In case your pet ever has debris in its eyes or an open wound, a sterile solution will be vital for safely cleaning it out.
These will remove splinters or other foreign objects from wounds. Fine-tipped tweezers can also be used to remove ticks.
9. Disposable gloves
Protect yourself from bodily fluids with disposable gloves.
Store your pet’s first aid kit in your home and be sure to take it with you if you are ever traveling together.
Don’t forget to occasionally check the supplies and replace any items that have expired. Having a well-provisioned first-aid kit has the power to potentially save your pet’s life until it can receive veterinary treatment.
To be completely prepared to handle an emergency, make sure you are familiar with all of the items in your first aid kit and how to use them. Further steps you could take to ensure the health and safety of your pets include:
- Taking a pet first aid class
- Reading animal first aid or health books
- Downloading the Pet First Aid by American Red Cross app
- Having a designated emergency clinic
Remember, the more prepared you are for an emergency, the calmer you will feel during one and the better you will be able to help your pet. Be sure to use Fauna Care to easily get started and share this article with your fellow pet-owning friends!