Creating A Pet First-Aid Kit

emergency pup

Spring is finally (finally!!) here! We’re not sure about you, but we’re definitely ready to trade in our snow boots and heavy coats for short sleeves, sunglasses and sunshine!

Naturally, nicer weather drives people and their pets to spend more time outside. For me and my dogs, warm weather means trips to the dog park and the beach, long walks and endless hours of playtime outside with canine pals. As you make your spring and summertime plans and get ready to enjoy more time in the great outdoors, it’s a smart idea to think about what you’d do in case of an emergency. What if your dog fell while playing and fractured a leg? Or was cut on rusty barbed-wire? Do you know what to do if your cat got into some rat poison? An emergency can happen at anytime, anywhere, whether you’re in your own home or out on a fun adventure with your pet. We hope that you’ll never find yourself in an emergency situation with your pet, but if one should occur, your preparedness could be the key to your pet’s successful recovery.

Part of your emergency preparedness should include creating a pet first-aid kit with everything you may need should you ever encounter an emergency situation with your (or another) pet.

When putting together a first-aid kit for your pets, you can make it as large or small as you see fit, but below is a list of the basic items that you may want to include:

  • The number for the animal poison control hotline and other relevant numbers (your veterinarian, local emergency vet hospitals, etc.)
  • Sterile pads/bandages
  • Gauze rolls
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • An instant ice pack
  • Tweezers
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Medical tape
  • Scissors
  • Rubber gloves
  • Sterile saline eye wash
  • Styptic powder
  • Benadryl
  • A few doses of any critical medications your pet may require
  • Sugar tablets
  • Bottled water and a bowl

Other helpful items you may want to include are:

  • Restraints (collar, leash, muzzle, etc.)
  • A pet carrier
  • Towels and blankets
  • A flashlight with extra batteries
  • An animal first-aid book

Of course, there are commercially-packaged pet first aid kits available for purchase via many retailers, but, as you can see, it’s quite simple and cost-efficient to put together your own, and especially so if you plan on making multiple kits. It’s important to keep your first-aid kit in a spot where it’s easily accessible. And, if you’re traveling, don’t forget to bring your kit along with you! Your kit should be kept in a sturdy, easy to carry bag or box and be sure to periodically check medications and solutions for expiration dates. Clearly label your kit as such and make sure that all family members know where it is located and what should be inside. Also, if you’ve never taken a pet first-aid class, it may be a good idea to familiarize yourself with some of the basics. In an emergency, a first-aid kit is of no use if you don’t know how to use it.

Again, we hope that you’ll never, ever need to reach your hands inside a pet first-aid kit, but it’s always a smart idea to be prepared, just in case!

We wish you and your pets a wonderful and safe spring and summer!!