First Aid For Dogs
What is first aid?
First aid is initial treatment given in a medical emergency. Its purpose is:
- To preserve life
- To reduce pain and discomfort
- To minimize any risk of permanent disability or disfigurement
In an emergency, what should I do first?
- Keep calm and assess the scene for any additional threats to you or your pet. This is important for everyone's safety.
- Keep your dog warm, as quiet as possible, and keep movement to a minimum, especially if there is possible trauma, broken limbs, or any neurological symptoms.
- Contact your veterinary hospital, inform them of the situation and get specific first aid advice.
- To safely move or transport an injured dog, get somebody to help you. For a small dog, put it into its carrier (remove the top for easy and safe access to the carrier; don't push an injured dog through the small door or opening), or use a suitable container such as a strong cardboard box. For a larger dog, use a makeshift stretcher made out of some rigid material such as an appropriate sized, sturdy piece of wood. Carefully maneuver the dog onto a blanket or coat so that it can be gently moved to the carrier, box or stretcher. The blanket will help stabilize the neck and spine, and prevent inadvertent biting or scratching from the injured pet.
- Get to a veterinary hospital as soon as possible, but drive carefully!