If your pet has a health emergency, it can be extremely scary. Especially if it happens at a time when your vet is closed. Proper veterinary care should always be the primary goal, but just a little knowledge of pet first aid and the signs of an emergency can save your fur baby’s life. Below are some signs to look for and emergency first aid procedures.
Choking: A dog will exhibit difficulty in breathing and paw at his mouth if they are choking. He will likely make choking sounds and could possibly have blue lips or tongue.
If your dog can still breathe, try to keep him calm and take him to the vet right away. It’s a good idea to have someone else drive while you care for him.
Be sure to use extreme caution when approaching a choking dog as they are more likely to bite while in panic.
Check your pet’s mouth to see if you can see the object that is causing them to choke. If you can, try to gently remove it while using care not to push it further down. If it is not immediately removable, don’t keep trying. Get them to the vet right away.
Should he collapse, place him on his side and firmly strike his rib cage with your palm. Do this 3 or 4 times, similar to the Heimlich. A wise tactic is to perform this procedure while you are on your way to a vet’s office.
Poisoning: Dogs try to eat everything. But many things they get into can be poisonous, from anti-freeze to cleaning products to certain foods. The best prevention is to keep known toxins out of the reach of your pet. But if they happen to get into something they shouldn’t, try to identify what was eaten.
If he has a seizure, follow the seizure protocol below.
Immediately call your vet or the Animal Poison Control Center at 888.426.4435.
Seizures: Just like with humans having a seizure, you need to make sure you move all obstacles that could cause injury during a seizure.
Do not restrain your pet, just make sure they have plenty of room.
Comfort him by talking to him in soothing tones throughout the seizure.
After the seizure has passed, it’s important to keep him quiet and warm until you can get him proper care.
Time the seizure so you are able to give your vet as much information as possible.
Call your vet as soon as possible to have your dog examined to determine the cause of the seizure.
Heatstroke: This can be a common problem in hot climates like Arizona. When your dog is outside, keep a close eye on him. Excessive panting and rapid heart rate can signal heatstroke.
If you believe your pet to be in heatstroke, immediately move him to a shady area or bring them inside.
Use a hose to run water over his body, particularly on his abdomen and between the back legs.
Put a cool, wet towel around his neck and head. Avoid covering his nose, mouth or eyes.
Re-wet the towel and replace every few minutes.
Contact your vet and get him to medical care as soon as possible.
Keep this Emergency Pet First Aid Guide close so you will always know what to do in an emergency.
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