First Aid Guide
HIT BY A CAR
Dogs hit by a car don’t know why they are in pain. Even if your dog is sweet-natured, he may bite if handled. Protect yourself by tying a rope or shoelace around his muzzle. If your dog can walk, lead him off the road. If he can’t, pull him onto a blanket and carry him hammock-style. Once you are in a safe place, control the bleeding and get him to your veterinarian immediately.
Your dog can be lacerated anywhere on his body, but his feet are particularly prone from stepping on sharp objects. A skin wound may not bleed, but if it does, put direct pressure on the bleeding site with a clean absorbent pad. Don’t lift the pad off to check the site – you’ll disturb the clot and promote more bleeding. If the pad fills with blood, put another on top and hold it in place. Get help as soon as possible.
SUFFERING FROM A EYE INJURY
Every eye injury should be handled like an emergency. Put a plastic dog cone collar (which every owner should have on hand) on your dog so he can’t scratch at his eye. See your veterinarian as quickly as possible.
If your dog consumes something suspicious, call poison control or your veterinarian to find out if the substance is toxic. In some cases, you’ll need to induce vomiting by giving your dog hydrogen peroxide orally (one teaspoon for every five kilograms body weight). In other cases, your dog will need to be hospitalized for treatment.
HAVING AN ALLERGIC REACTION
If your dog’s face is swelling, he is probably having an allergic reaction, most likely to an insect bite. Allergic reactions are life-threatening (and require immediate veterinary care) only if your dog is having breathing trouble. If your dog has facial swelling and hives, he may need an antihistamine. Call your veterinarian for advice.
SUFFERING FROM A BROKEN LEG
If he can’t bear weight on a leg, your dog may have a fractured bone. You need to keep him immobile to reduce bone movement and pain. Get him onto a board or into a blanket or take the top off his kennel and lay him in it then put the top back on. Then transport him right away to the nearest veterinary hospital.
The solution for overheating is cooling, but don’t do it too quickly! To cool him, run room-temperature water over his head, neck and back. If he remains weak, he could be going into shock and will need emergency treatment.
If your dog is swollen behind his ribs, has pale gums, is weak in his hind legs and is wretching, he may have a dilated, or twisted, stomach. If you have the smallest suspicion that your dog is bloating, immediately seek veterinary care, as he could die within a very short time. If your dog bloats from drinking too much water or eating too much food; you should take your dog for a walk. Walking will help move the fluid and food through the intestines and the bloating will go away.
THINGS TO INCLUDE IN YOUR DOG’S FIRST-AID KIT
rope for temporary leash or muzzle
plastic dog cone collar to protect the eyes from pawing
blanket to carry your dog or keep him warm
thermometer (normal canine temperature is 38 to 39 degrees Celsius)
antihistamine (ask your veterinarian which one to get and how much to give depending on the weight of the dog)
Hydrogen peroxide (to induce vomiting in case of poisoning)
Your veterinarian’s phone number and the veterinary emergency hospital’s phone number should be close to your phone at all times.