First Aid Kit

"Pet First Aid" Bobbie Mammato of The Humane Society of the United States and The American National Red Cross, advises:

In this section you find a list of items every pet owner should have at hand for their pet first aid kit. The kit itself can be stored in a waterproof pouch if kept on a boat and in a small tool box or other kind of box in the house. A small version can even be kept in your car trunk. Medications and medical supplies should be kept safely out of the reach of children. Since some of the items in your kit will carry expiration dates, check your kit periodically, discard outdated medications and supplies and make sure you have all the supplies you need. If your pet has any special conditions or needs, ask your veterinarian what additional items you may need for your first aid kit.

Your pet first aid kit should include the following:

  • Latex gloves
  • Gauze sponges (available at most pharmacies). A variety of sizes, both large and small, are best to keep on hand.
  • Roll gauze, 2-inch width.
  • Roll bandages, such as gauze wrap that stretches and clings. These are available at pharmacies, pet stores and through pet catalogs.
  • Material to make a splint. This can include pieces of wood, newspaper and sticks.
  • Adhesive tape, hypo-allergenic.
  • Non-adherent sterile pads. These pads make excellent dressings and can be purchased in most pharmacies.
  • Small scissors.
  • Grooming clippers (available in pet stores and pet catalogs) or a safety razor.
  • Nylon leash (at least one).
  • Towel
  • Muzzle. A cage muzzle is ideal, but a soft collapsible one may be more convenient to carry. Get one you already know fits your pet. If you do not want to purchase one, a least have plenty of roll gauze available to use as a make-shift muzzle.
  • Compact thermal blanket. These may be purchased in some pharmacies; they are also frequently found in sporting good stores and catalogs. If you cannot get a thermal blanket, have a regular blanket available.
  • Pediatric rectal thermometer (may be digital).
  • Water-based sterile lubricant (washes off easily).
  • Three percent hdrogen peroxide (this will have an expiration date).
  • Rubbing alcohol (isopropyl).
  • Over-the-counter topical antibiotic ointment.
  • Epsom salts.
  • Baby dose syringe or eye dropper (non-glass). These are available at pharmacies or in the baby section of most grocery stores.
  • Sterile eye lubricant
  • Sterile saline eye wash.
  • Diphenhydramine, appropriate dosage for your pet's size, if approved by your veterinarian. This will have an expiration date.
  • Glucose paste or corn syrup.
  • Styptic powder or pencil. Pharmacies carry styptic pencils for use when people cut themselves shaving. Veterinary styptic products are sold at veterinary hospitals, pet supply stores and through catalogs.
  • Expired credi card to scrape away stingers.
  • A list of emergency telephone numbers including your pet's veterinarian, an afater-hours emergency veterinary hospital and the National Animal Poison Control Center (1-800-548-2423 or 1-900-680-0000).
  • Petroleum jelly.
  • Penlight
  • Clean cloth.
  • Needle-nose pliers.

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