If you share your home with a four-legged family member, it’s important to be prepared in case of a pet emergency.
A pet emergency can be an extremely stressful and scary situation. Hopefully you will never need to administer first aid, rescue breathing, or CPR to your pet. However, if there is a need, being calm and prepared is the best thing you can do for your dog or cat.
Pet First Aid – American Red Cross:
The most comprehensive pet first aid resource we’ve discovered is provided by the American Red Cross. The free application has preparation, first aid, and emergency care information for dogs and cats. You can download the free “Pet First Aid” application to your phone or tablet here.
When it comes to pet emergencies, the most common scenarios you will run into are First Aid, Rescue Breathing, or CPR.
* FIRST AID: Has Heartbeat, Has Breathing
* RESCUE BREATHING: Has Heartbeat, No Breathing
* CPR: No Heartbeat, No Breathing
Pet First Aid is the immediate care given to a pet that has been injured or is suddenly ill. Timely and appropriate first aid can help your dog or cat with something as simple as a bee sting to more advanced actions such as a safe transport. The American Red Cross Pet First Aid application lists 3-4 steps for common first aid scenarios.
Rescue Breathing & CPR:
Rescue Breathing: (Has Heartbeat, No Breathing) No breathing can be caused by factors such as drowning, trauma, poisoning, or electrocution. The American Red Cross Pet First Aid application includes rescue breathing steps under the “CPR” section.
CPR: (No Heartbeat, No Breathing) This is a true life-threatening emergency. Clinically, the pet has passed away, however the pet may still be alive at a biological level. The American Red Cross Pet First Aid application includes CPR steps for dogs (by size and shape) and cats.
If a first aid/emergency arises and you don’t have scenario response plans in place, don’t waste time scrolling through the application for information. Immediately take your dog or cat to the vet. However, keep in mind that certain emergencies require stabilization prior to transport, such as choking, heat stroke, or CPR. Preparation is key!
If your vet is closed or you’re out of town with your pet, be prepared by knowing the nearest 24/7 pet emergency hospital location.