You should always have a first aid kit on hand, because medical accidents and emergencies occur when you least expect them. It’s the sort-of factor where having one could be potentially lifesaving, or at least preventative, in terms of future health. While first aid kits for humans can be found in most workplaces, vehicles, and public areas, it isn’t often that we find a kit equipped or suited to care for our furry friends. Putting a first aid kit together for your pet is relatively easy, making it the difference between life and death if your companion is in a state of pet emergency.
Start with a clear, plastic container, preferably one that is waterproof. You can also use a large, resealable zipper storage bag (ex. Ziploc), and keep the following contents inside:
- A piece of paper with the address and phone number of your veterinarian and local animal emergency center. It is also helpful to have the animal poison control center number on hand: 1-888-426-4435
- Saline solution
- Antibiotic ointment
- Hydrogen peroxide
- Non-stick bandages
- A spare collar and leash
- A muzzle. While you might think your pet would never need a muzzle, even the calmest animals may become frightened and angry when injured or sick.
While these are the just the basic components, there are a variety of other tools and supplies that can be useful when field treating an animal. The Humane Society has a helpful resource on pet first aid kits here.
Make sure to always have your kit in a readily accessible location, because when an emergency strikes, time is of the essence. If you are traveling, bring the kit with. First aid is just the first step in treating an injury, meaning, you should always contact your vet, or an emergency animal service, after treating the initial wound or issue.