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Build A First Aid Kit For Your Dog

Person Holding Australian Shepherd

Chances are, you’ve got a first aid kit for the humans in your home or, at the very least, a variety of first aid supplies in your medicine cabinet in the event of an emergency. But, do you have one for your dog, too? Of course, you can buy a pre-made kit at your local pet store or online, but in just a few minutes and a quick trip to the store, you can build a first aid kit for your dog at home! Be prepared for anything from scrapes and scratches, to ticks, and broken bones until you can get your pup to the vet. Here are some staples to include, provided by TripsWithPets.com.

Build A First Aid Kit For Your Dog

The Staples
Each pet is different, so there isn’t a “perfect” standard kit that will meet all the needs of your particular little companion. However, the following items will provide a good foundation for you to start your kit. Don’t forget to obtain two of everything to keep one at home and one in the car for travel.

  • A container large enough to hold of all of these items. It should open and close easily but be secure and water-resistant if at all possible.
  • A list of phone numbers including your regular vet, emergency vet, animal control, and animal poison control numbers. It’s best to have these pre-programmed in your cell phone as well.
  • A muzzle is a good idea for pets that are very injured/afraid – even well-trained pets may bite in these situations, even if they never showed any kind of aggressive behavior in the past.
  • Leash
  • Extra towels, wash cloths and a blanket
  • Ice and hot packs wrapped in a cloth can cool down skin after a burn or keep a pet warm if hypothermic
  • Scissors to cut masses that are matted in fur or freeing her from entanglements.
  • Tweezers to remove splinters, or other foreign materials from wounds.
  • Tick remover tool
  • Toenail trimmer
  • QuikClot (or a similar product) to stop bleeding.
  • Gauze for bandaging or to help stop bleeding.
  • Syringe or large eye dropper to flush out wounds or administer fluids by mouth.
  • Small bottle of 3% hydrogen peroxide
  • Antiseptic wash or wipes
  • Ear wash
  • Sterile eye wash
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Syrup of ipecac to induce vomiting in the event of poisoning.
  • Latex or plastic exam gloves in case the situation gets messy.
  • Pet first aid book – These items will not be of any use to you if you don’t know how to properly use them. Read up and keep this in the kit for quick reference in the event of an emergency.

Additional Items
Depending on your pet, you may need to include more items to complete the kit. If your pet takes medication, be sure to include a few days of the prescription. Is your pet extremely active and takes frequent hikes or outdoor excursions? It’s probably a good idea to include something to create a splint (tongue depressor, 12-inch ruler, or thick magazine). Ask your veterinarian for help in customizing a kit that’s perfect for your dog.

Go the Extra Mile
Now that you’ve got your kit built, why not take it one step further and attend a pet first aid and CPR class? Pets obviously need different care and handling than their humans. Check with your veterinarian, community college, or local Red Cross about the availability of classes in your area. Your four-legged family member will definitely appreciate it.

Read more from TripsWithPets.com here. Building a first aid kit for your dog at home may seem unnecessary, and hopefully you’ll never need it – but being prepared for an emergency will give you peace of mind, and could be the difference between life and death of your furry friend.

Do you have a first aid kit for your dog at home? See any necessary items not listed above that our readers should include in theirs? Let us know in the comments below!

4 Responses to Build A First Aid Kit For Your Dog
  1. […] 20% of dog owners have a Dog First Aid Kit on hand. Even fewer are trained to give CPR. As dog owners, many of us would do anything to protect […]

  2. VetTech
    April 5, 2013 | 11:35 am

    NEVER USE IPECAC TO INDUCE VOMITING!! Ipecac contains sweeteners like Xylitol which is toxic to dogs and cats! Only induce vomiting if recommended to do so by a Veterinarian, and use only what they recommend. Most Vets will recommend activated charcoal or hydrogen peroxide.

  3. [...] 20% of dog owners have a Dog First Aid Kit on hand. Even fewer are trained to give CPR. As dog owners, many of us would do anything to protect [...]

  4. [...] dog. Consider taking a dog first-aid course to prepare yourself to deal with an accident at home. Here are some ideas for what to include in your pet’s first aid kit at home. 3. Consider the cost [...]

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