First Aid Basics Every Pet Owner Should Know

how to care for your dog
In times of medical pet emergencies, your best option is to immediately rush your beloved four legged friend to the veterinarian. …

Many families have adopted a new addition into their brood. The only difference is that their new baby has fur, 4 legs or at times may even have wings. Yes, it is without a doubt that pets have already invaded our homes, and for many of us the mere thought of losing our beloved dog or cat is enough to make us tremble in fear.

In times of medical pet emergencies, your best option is to immediately rush your beloved four legged friend to the veterinarian. But, that option isn’t always available. What happens if you are traveling with your pet, or there isn’t a 24 hour emergency clinic to take them to?

If immediate treatment is necessary then it is best to keep yourself informed of these important first aid tips that can help save your pet’s life.

Pet Emergency 1: Poisoning

As your playful dog or feisty cat is always on the search for food, they become easily susceptible to ingesting poisons that are haphazardly left around the home or garage.

If your pet has eaten or drunk something toxic, it is best to call your veterinarian and ask for their instructions. Do not attempt to force your beloved dog to vomit as this can lead to further damage in their esophagus or trigger choking which spells more disaster for your precious pet.

If, however, the doctor advises you to induce vomiting, then be mindful of his every instruction to avoid harming your pet.

Pet Emergency 2: Bites and Cuts

Nasty cuts and bites run the risk of infection which is why it is necessary to call for your veterinarian. If your feline pal is bleeding profusely, you can try to minimize blood loss by covering the open wound with sterile gauze or cloth. If, however, a stick or broken glass is lodged into the wound, never attempt to remove it on your own and wait until help arrives.

For punctures that are not spilling blood, you can simply opt to clean out the affective area before applying a saline solution. Bandage the affected area to prevent your pet from licking his wounds.

Pet Emergency 3: Car Accidents

One of the worst things that can happen to your furred friend is to get run down or hit by a car. When this happens, drive to the nearest veterinary clinic as soon as you can, but, before doing so, first make sure to keep your pet secured and ready for the short trip.

In these kinds of emergencies, remember to keep calm and carefully put down your pet on a flat board and fasten them securely to help keep him from moving. If you dog incurred a head injury, tip the board until his head is slightly raised before driving slowly to the nearest clinic.

These are just a few of the most common health emergencies that pets experience. The minor decisions you make for protecting them during the transport to the vet can make a big difference in minimizing their injury and recovery time.

The absolute first and most important step to your pets health is finding a local vet who has a good bond with your animal. All of these tips are merely a stopgap to give you time to get your dog and cat to a trained professional. This means you can’t wait until the emergency to find a good doctor in the area. Instead, you need to do your research early and have an initial visit so that the vet is familiar with Fido.

Mandy is currently a writer for, but she loves to write about all things related to health and first aid, even pet health.