While a first aid kit for your dog will in no way replace the help of a trained veterinarian, it can certainly make an emergency much easier to handle. Imagine your dog gets injured while hiking, making it back to your vehicle so that you can seek treatment may be challenging without the suitable supplies for your canine companion. Likewise, some injuries require care but not necessarily a full vet trip, in such cases, it’s much less stressful to have these supplies on hand rather than have to make a panicked trip to the store. With that in mind read below for a few items you might want to stock up on!
- 1. Laminated Emergency Numbers Card: Your first aid kit should always contain a laminated or protected card with the number for your local vet, your emergency after-hours clinic and Animal Poison Control.
- 2. Gauze Pads: For bandaging cuts
- 3. Tape & Non-Stick Bandages: For a pet emergency supply kit you should have both of these on hand. The tape is handy for securing bandages to each other but you can’t use it on fur..which is where products like vet wrap can come in handy.
- 4. Cotton Balls: These are excellent for cleaning wounds and applying ointments or antiseptics.
- 5. Hydrogen Peroxide: To immediately disinfect wounds, can also be used to induce vomiting if you suspect your pet has ingested something bad for them. This should only be done under instruction from a vet.
- 6. Antibiotic Spray & Ointment: To help keep wounds clean while bandaged.
- 7. Scissors: For trimming bandages and gauze pads. It can even help clean up fur around a wound or cut out burrs and other irritants.
- 8. Tweezers: For pulling slivers and debris out of paw-pads or wounds. It can also be used to remove ticks if you’re spending time in the woods.
- 9. Syringes (Without the Needle): These are useful for flushing wounds or delivering medications if needed.
- 10. Flashlight: Nothing in your kit will do you any good if you can’t see!
Optional But Helpful Emergency Kit Items
While these items might not be necessary for immediate injury relief having good quality versions of them on hand can be very helpful when you end up dealing with injury rehabilitation or even when dealing with everyday issues (like preventing excessive licking of an irritated hot spot/bug bite). Having these items in your house just means you don’t need to make a run to the store when they crop up!
- 11. Recovery Collar – No dog likes the ‘cone of shame’ but they probably like the softer higher quality ones provided by companies like OneTigris then the hard one uses plastic ones you get from the vet. Of course, the side benefit of using these higher quality recovery collars is that they can be washed and reused which is great for the environment AND your wallet.
- 12. Leg Braces – Animals love to injure their legs, a lot of them play hard and end up limping for a variety of reasons. Having a couple of leg braces on hand to help support an injury before you can make it to the vet can be very helpful!
- 13. Portable & Washable Dog Bed – Having a dog bed that is easy to wash and move around can be great if you have a sick animal Not only can you relocate it to a specific spot should you need to quarantine your pet (or just keep them close by) but being able to wash it can help keep illness from spreading. If you find yourself having to evacuate an easy to grab and carry pet bed that your animal is familiar with can be a nice addition when trying to make a pet comfortable in unfamiliar locations.
- 14. Towels – Towels can be very useful! They can work as makeshift bandages, clean up messes and even double as a bed or blanket. Everyone should have some old extra towel stashed away!
- 15. Muzzle – No one wants to think that their pet will bite them but when an animal is in pain or afraid and you NEED to move them..it can happen. Having a muzzle that is fitted to your pet and that you’ve spent the time conditioning them too so that they don’t see it as a negative item can be very helpful in times of great stress. It can be a tool to keep both you AND your pet safe while seeking treatment or getting to safety.
Emergency Kit Items For Disaster Scenarios
Sometimes our emergency kits should include things that are not related to treating injures. If you live in an area that’s prone to environmental dangers such as hurricanes, wildfires or flooding it can be useful to have some of these items on hand – just in case you find yourself having to evacuate or without power for extended periods of time.
- 16. Proof Of Ownership – These can be photos, registration papers or microchip ID numbers/login Information Pretty much anything that will prove that you are the owner of a specific animal should you be separated during an emergency evacuation.
- 17. Food – It’s recommended that you keep extra food on hand for your pets just like you stock up for your family. Ensure that food is stored in a cool dry location and use & replace it as needed to make sure it doesn’t expire.
- 18. Water – When stocking up on water for your family, don’t forget to get extra for your pets.
Of course, if you don’t feel like putting together a DIY kit there are many pre-made ones available for you to buy! The bottom line is to always be prepared.
Credit: Tales From Home
Photo Credit: @ericjamesward
Pet Owners' Questions Answered
1) Is my dog safe from COVID-19?
There is currently little reason to believe that COVID-19 can be passed from dogs to humans, but taking precautionary action is advisable. Switching your days out exploring together for relaxing on the sofa during self-isolation, along with good hygiene, can help to protect both you and your pet.
2) Can dogs catch COVID-19?
Dogs can catch certain types of Coronavirus, and it’s believed that COVID-19 originated from an animal source. The World Health Organization has stated that there has been one case of a dog becoming infected in Hong Kong. Additionally, there have also been photos on social media emerge of pet owners putting face masks on their dogs, leading many people to worry about their pets catching COVID-19. Despite this, the American Kennel Club (AKC) says that COVID-19 is not believed to be a threat to dogs or other pets; people are encouraged to use common sense when it comes to pets and hygiene.
3) Should my dog wear a face mask?
It’s important not to put masks on pets. This can make them panic, affect their breathing, and is a waste of a mask that medical professionals need. The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) suggests that pets should be quarantined at home if their owners are self-isolating as a precautionary measure.
4) Are there any illnesses that affect both humans and dogs?
There are plenty of illnesses that do spread between animals and humans. As mentioned above, different types of Coronavirus can affect dogs too, such as the canine respiratory Coronavirus. Other viral infections that affect both dogs and humans include rabies and norovirus. Black mold growth in homes has also shown to cause the same symptoms in pets and their owners, including coughs, sneezes, runny eyes, and a runny nose.
Fortunately, dealing with mold growth is often easier than avoiding viruses, and includes cleaning the affected area and finding the cause of the mold in order to avoid it growing back again. In some cases, professionals may be required to fix the cause and treat problem areas.
Credit: Bri Billings