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If you have a pet you should also have a pet first aid kit with a rectal thermometer, tweezers, a small scissors, petroleum jelly, cotton bandages, adhesive tape, swabs, gauze pads, a germicidal soap, antibiotic cream, three percent hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting, and powdered activated charcoal to absorb poisons. When an animal is hurt, whether it is a minor or major injury, they tend to become somewhat disoriented and might not want to be handled. Some will even turn on their trusted owner if the injury is touched in a way that makes it more painful. Always keep your veterinarians number with your other medical numbers near the telephone. You should also include the number of the nearest poison control center and a pet emergency clinic in your area. Immediately after your pet has been injured you should contact your veterinarian, especially if the injury is serious.
When your pet is injured by a car or fall and it cannot get up, do not move it. If you have to, move it as little as possible. Even if it does get up do not allow it to walk or run. If there is someone with you, have them call the veterinarian or make any necessary arrangements to get you to the pet emergency while you sooth the animal. Use a 2 feet long piece of gauze, necktie or stocking to make a muzzle to restrain the dog. If the dog becomes sick or starts to vomit, remove the muzzle and then replace it. A towel, blanket or throw should be used to wrap an injured cat that is panicky. If you have someone with you an alternative for this would be to have them hold the cat by the scruff of the neck and restrain the rear legs with the other hand. Lie the cat on a table with the injured side up and its body extended so you can administer first aid. When the wound is bleeding you should press a cloth or gauze pad on the wound and wrap it tightly with gauze strips. Never use a tourniquet to restrict bleeding. When you believe the cat has a broken bone restrict all of its movements. In cases where no bleeding or wound is present the animal should still be kept restricted in case there are internal injuries or shock. Check the cat for shallow, uneven breathing and pale gums. Keep the animal warm by covering it with a blanket while you transport it. When the cat is struggling place it in a pillowcase to transport it. If it is necessary to transport a dog you should slide it gently onto a board or some other form of rigid support. You can even use a blanket, coat or other such articles to make a stretcher.
When treating minor wounds on your pet you should begin by clipping the coat around the wound. Then rinse it with water and gently remove surface dirt with a cotton swab. Next wash the area with a germicidal soap and apply antibiotic ointment. If the injury is a bite or cut larger than one inch, it should be treated by a veterinarian. If your pet is gagging, has excessive salivation or vomiting it may have swallowed a small object. Try to find out what the animal swallowed and then call your veterinarian. Occasionally the object can be remove from the animals throat with your finger but be very careful not to push it further down or tear the animals throat. If your animal has drank a poisonous substance try to determine what the poison is and then immediately call the poison control center. They will tell you whether to administer hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting or activated charcoal. If the substance is caustic or you are unsure what the substance is, rush your pet to your veterinarian. If you animal is panting and drooling heavily, collapses or is warm to the touch it may be having a heat stroke. Place the animal in a cold bath or douse it with a hose to bring its temperature down. Place ice packs on its neck and continue this treatment until the animal stops panting or its body temperature returns to normal. If your animal chews into an electrical cord do not touch the animal. Cut off the power by throwing the circuit breaker or prod the animal away from the cord with a wooden stick. Be sure you are standing on a dry surface or rubber mat when you do this. Take the animal to your veterinarian immediately.