Managing Pet Accidents
You're probably prepared to handle everyday emergencies that may arise with your family and children, but what about your pets? April is National Pet First Aid Awareness Month, and Banfield, The Pet Hospital, which has more than 450 hospitals across the United States, the United Kingdom and Mexico, would like to prepare pet parents to prevent and manage any unforeseen accidents. Warmer weather signals the beginning of spring cleaning, gardening, barbecues and campfires – all fun family occasions that might pose a threat to pets.
Keeping a pet first aid kit alongside your family's kit is a smart way to prepare, and your neighborhood Banfield doctor can tell you what basic supplies every pet first aid kit should have. Here are more tips to prepare if your pet is accidentally harmed by any common springtime health hazards:
Campfires and Barbecues
Banfield's medical record database shows hundreds of dog and cat injuries associated with campfires and barbeques. Here's what to do if your pet is accidentally burned:
For small first degree burns (red skin, but no deep tissue damage) cool the area with water and monitor for blisters. If the burned area is large or if blisters develop, have your pet seen by your veterinarian immediately, as more aggressive treatment may be needed.
Most pet owners keep obvious dangers like bleach and lye out of reach, but Banfield doctors see dozens of sick pets who have ingested glass cleaner – especially dogs, who gobbled up glass cleaner-soaked paper towels. If pets ingest household cleaners:
Have your pet examined by your veterinarian immediately. Do not induce vomiting unless your veterinarian recommends it. Bring the cleanser package with you to the doctor, as the label will have important information to help your veterinarian determine the best course of treatment.
Lawn and Garden Tools
Banfield's database shows dozens of cases of dogs being accidentally cut or hit with shovels, rakes and hoes. If your pet is injured:
Protect yourself. Have someone help restrain your pet and/or apply a muzzle. Injured pets are often confused and in pain, and your attempts to examine the wound and stop the bleeding may elicit an unintentional bite or scratch. Apply direct pressure to bleeding wounds, and transport your pet to your veterinarian immediately. A bandage may not apply enough pressure to stop the bleeding alone, especially if a blood vessel was injured.