Jack Russell Terrier getting bandage from a dog first aid kit after injury on his leg

How to Make Your Own Pet First Aid Kit

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Picture this: your playful pup, Max, is out exploring the park with you. Suddenly, he steps on something sharp and goes “ouch!” (or more like “RAWF!”) Having a pet first aid kit is like having a pet-saver package, with all the essential stuff you need to fix those tiny troubles. Even better if you’ve done a pet first aid course and know exactly what to do!

Your comprehensive kit should be a magic box full of goodies, like antiseptic wipes to clean their boo-boos, bandages to cover their ouchies, and tweezers to pluck out any pesky thorns or splinters. Here’s what you need in your cat or dog first aid kit.

pets first aid kit concept.

Why would you need a pet first aid kit?

Having a pet first aid kit is like having a safety net for your furry buddy. You never know when accidents or emergencies might strike.

Remember, having a cat or dog first aid kit on hand isn’t a replacement for professional vet care. It’s a smart and caring way to respond promptly to minor incidents or initially provide comfort until you can reach a vet if needed.

Here are 5 reasons why you need a pet first aid kit:

#1 Unexpected mishaps

Pets can be curious and adventurous, which sometimes leads them into trouble. They might get a small cut, scrape, or splinter during their explorations. Having a first aid kit means you can attend to these minor incidents right away, reducing their pain and/or stress (and yours!).

#2 Common ailments

Pets can also suffer from everyday health issues like upset stomachs and flea bites. With the right knowledge and supplies, you can provide some immediate relief before seeking professional help.

#3 Outdoor adventure

If you and your pet love the great outdoors, there’s a higher chance of encountering ticks, thorns, or other hazards. A pet first aid kit equips you to handle these situations while enjoying your adventures (almost) worry-free.

#4 Emergencies

Sometimes, pets face more serious emergencies like accidental poisoning, heatstroke, or fractures. In such critical situations, having a well-prepared first aid kit may be able to stabilise your pet before you rush them to the vet.

#5 Peace of mind

Knowing you have a pet first aid kit at hand gives you peace of mind as a responsible pet parent. You’ll feel more confident in handling minor incidents, and it shows your pet that you’ve got their back no matter what happens.

White Shepherd dog with first aid kit on couch in clinic

Tick list – Your pet first aid kit

A pet first aid kit is like a superhero toolbox for your furry pals! It’s packed with essential stuff to handle pet emergencies like a pro and help keep your four-legged mate safe and sound. Here are 20 items you need:

Bandages and dressings:

Ideal for covering up small cuts, scrapes, or wounds.

Antiseptic wipes:

These magical wipes help clean wounds and stop any pesky germs from causing more trouble.

Gauze pads:

Soft and gentle pads to put over wounds before bandaging them up.

Scissors:

Make sure they’re pet-friendly with rounded tips, perfect for trimming fur and cutting bandages.

Splinter remover:

For… splinters. This will be a more effective tool for removing them than tweezers.

Tick remover tool:

A special gadget to get rid of those creepy crawlies if they latch onto your pet.

Tweezers:

To help remove thorns or other foreign objects.

Saline solution:

A gentle liquid to rinse out eyes or clean wounds.

Pet thermometer:

Keep an eye on your pet’s temperature, ’cause they can’t tell us if they’re feeling too hot or too cold. Speaking of, read what you need to know about heatstroke in pets.

Small towel:

This can be used for everything from applying pressure on a broken limb to drying them off if they get into trouble in a waterway.

Cold packs:

Your vet may suggest these are applied to an injury while you work towards getting your pet to a vet.

Pet first aid guide:

A helpful booklet with step-by-step instructions on what to do in emergencies.

Emergency contact numbers:

Jot down the numbers of the animal poisons helpline, your vet and nearest animal hospital, so you’re ready to call for backup if needed.

Anti vomiting/diarrhoea mixture:

See if your vet will provide this beforehand, as a just in case.

Latex gloves:

Keep your hands clean while you help your pet.

Blanket:

To comfort your pet if they’re feeling poorly or cold.

Muzzle or fabric strip:

This helps to keep everyone safe when providing first aid.

Torch or flashlight:

Shed some light on the situation, especially if it’s dark out!

Tick/flea treatment:

Handy stuff to keep those critters away from your four-legged mate. Find out more about flea treatment in NZ (and ticks, too).

Toy:

If your pet has a few faves then why not put one in your cat or dog first aid kit to provide comfort when it’s feeling poorly.

Remember, it’s not just about having the kit; you need to know how to use it too! So, have a little practice session with your pet.

Alternatively, you can book yourself a pet first aid course! (more on that below) 次

Pet first aid courses?

Pet first aid courses will equip you with the confidence, knowledge and skills to handle pet emergencies like a true hero! These courses are typically taught by experienced professionals or vets and cover a wide range of topics.

Here’s what you can expect to learn:

  • Basic first aid techniques: Such as how to clean wounds, apply bandages, and handle minor injuries.
  • CPR and rescue breathing: Learn how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and rescue breathing techniques.
  • Choking and Heimlich manoeuvre: Know how to recognise the signs of choking and how to perform the Heimlich manoeuvre on a pet.
  • Handling injuries and fractures: Learn how to stabilise injuries until you can get professional vet help.
  • Common pet ailments: Recognise common ailments like heatstroke, poisoning, insect bites, and more.
  • Pet vital signs: Get familiar with heart rate, respiration rate, and temperature.
  • Handling anxious pets: Discover techniques to keep them calm and cooperative during first aid procedures.
  • Emergency evacuation and transport: Understand how to safely evacuate and transport an injured pet to the vet.
  • When to seek professional help: Know the signs of emergencies that require immediate vet attention.

Here are some pet first aid courses in New Zealand:

Cat with cast. Her owner may have had a cat or dog first aid kit

More on pet safety

The PD Insurance blog has tons of articles on keeping pets safe and healthy. Below are some that focus on emergency situations:

Insurance helps your injured pet get treatment

If your pet were to somehow get lost and become injured, it would be good to know that should a kind passerby take them to a vet or animal shelter, the medical bill wouldnt be too hard to swallow.

Taking out pet insurance means that if the worst happens and your pet gets injured, you can focus on helping them get better rather than working 17 jobs to pay for the vet bills!

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