Do you have a pet first aid kit for minor cuts and scrapes or allergic reactions? Are you prepared to do triage in case of something that does require veterinary care? We chat with two pet first aid experts – Denise Fleck, the Pet Safety Crusader, and Arden Moore at PetFirstAid4U – about how you should prepare to care for your dog or your cat.
This video is part of the Pet Voices PRESENTS series. CLICK HERE to see all the series videos.
Jessica Shipman, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 0:01
Do you have a pet first aid kit for your dog or your cat when they get injured or have a small minor injury at home? It’s important so that way you don’t have to rush off to the vet for something small.
Chloe DiVita, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 0:11
Or if you have a pet sitter who comes over all the time, it’s handy for you to have that so that they can grab it.
Today, we’re going to share with you all the things that you should have in your pet first aid kit for your home. And of course, to do that like normal, we’ve brought in an expert, two actually. First, we are going to start with Denise Fleck, who is known as the Pet Safety Crusader. You can find her at the PetSafetyCrusader.com. And she specializes in teaching pet first aid and knowing everything there is to know about pet first aid. So, we just went to her and asked her, what to put in a dog first aid kit or cat first aid kit? If you don’t have anything together yet, or if you do and you just want to make sure it has the right things.
Here is what Denise recommends to put together the best pet first aid kit for your home.
PET FIRST AID KIT ESSENTIALS
Denise Fleck, Pet Safety Crusader – 0:49
The most basic things you need in your pet first aid kit include:
- 3% fresh bubbly hydrogen peroxide
- Eyewash – purified water, saline, or even a fresh, new bottle of water
- Digital thermometer and some kind of lubricant to make it glide
- Compression bandage material – 2-inch or 4-inch gauze squares, gauze roll, and flexible wrap that sticks to itself and not to your pet’s fur
- Benadryl for bee stings and various allergies. I like the gel caps that you can prick with a safety pin and just squirt under your pet’s tongue. Make sure that it’s only diphenhydramine, no other added elements.
- Syringe, eyedropper, or turkey baster to deliver liquid medication
- Bluntnose scissors
- Gloves to protect you from bacteria
- Styptic powder to stop the bleeding on bloody toenails. You could always use a slice of white bread, cornstarch, or flour if you are in a bind. You will probably have one of those at home in your kitchen.
And last but not least, your first aid guide because you might just need a quick reminder before you actually apply a first aid technique.
Jessica Shipman, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 2:01
That comes off as quite a few things but don’t worry. If you don’t have them, it’s pretty easy to just grab a bin, a bag, whatever you want to keep your stuff in and throw it in as you acquire it to build your first aid kid.
But now that we know what you should start with, we want to talk about why you should have this. What kind of thing could actually happen to your pet at home?
WHY SHOULD YOU HAVE A PET FIRST AID KIT?
Chloe DiVita, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 2:22
I have a lot of experience with things like cuts and scrapes. For one, I have a Greyhound and their skin is very easy to cut and scrap. She has done everything from slicing open her side to tearing her paw between her two toes. Having a first aid kit with supplies like dog bandages for all of those minor cuts and scrapes, which in between the toes can be severe, is important. You still want to be able to treat it even if it is something that gets to the point where you have to get to the vet. Having the ability to triage before you go is really helpful. And cuts and scrapes are common. Pets are wild. They are running all over and even in your home, they can get beat up by playing.
Jessica Shipman, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 2:56
And those, cuts and scrapes, can happen anytime. It can be when your dog or cat runs through a thorny bush or when your two dogs are playing bitey face and it escalates. It gets a little bit out of hand.
And another reason that I like to have a first aid kit on hand is for when I clip my dog’s nails. And the same applies for cats. If you hit that quick, you could be dealing with a bloody mess. And it’s not a severe injury. But it is something that you want to try and deal with right away. And also prevent your house from being covered in blood. I don’t recommend that.
Chloe DiVita, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 3:28
And it’s painful for them too, so you want to be able to get to it as quickly as you can. That’s a big reason. You are actually trying to help your pet.
And another thing that can happen is things like bee stings, bug bites, or an allergic reaction. My Greyhound has been stung by bees and to this day, she still thinks that if something touches her lower back that is small and light it must be a bee and she freaks out. But dogs and cats can have allergies to trees and to different things just like humans can. My little one ran through bushes once and whatever was in there made his eyes swell up, so we had to use some eye drops and Benadryl to get it under control.
Just being prepared for all of those things is really important and it makes you feel better about the care that you can offer to your pets.
Jessica Shipman, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 4:06
One of my dogs loves to try to eat bees out of the sky. He has never been successful. But just in case he ever is, I want to be prepared. We like to call them Jalapeno Sky Raisins.
Chloe DiVita, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 4:19
Well, I do also hope he’s never successful.
Jessica Shipman, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 4:22
And another reason, especially in winter months or if you go on walks on concrete, is dry paw pads. If your cat or your dog’s paw pads start to deteriorate, you want to keep them moisturized. You want to keep an eye on that, but having a first aid kit with something that can help with dry paw pads will keep them safe and healthy.
If you hike or adventure with your pet, a specific cat or dog first aid kit for hiking can address the most common problems you may face in a travel-friendly size.
And as Chloe mentioned earlier, the goal here is to treat what you can at home, but sometimes it does involve still taking them to the vet if something is more severe. But you want to get your pet into a situation where they can be transported to the vet, feel safe, and you’re not, again, dealing with blood everywhere. So, that’s another good reason to have a first aid kit at home.
And though many of these things apply both to cats and dogs, we do know that cats are a little bit different. They have different needs and there are things that they maybe can’t have that dogs can.
CAT SPECIFIC FIRST AID KIT
Chloe DiVita, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 5:16
We wanted to make sure that we got the proper information around cats, so we reached out to Arden Moore who is the Pet Health and Safety Coach. She does a lot with cats, so we brought her in here. You can check her out on her site, which is PetFirstAid4U.com. She is going to come in and share with you cat-specific needs when it comes to putting together a pet first aid kit for cats so that you can ensure to keep your pets safe.
Arden Moore, Pet First Aid 4 U – 5:44
When you are handling an injured cat and you’re getting your pet first aid kit, get everything ready before you try to get the cat. You know that cats are different from dogs, so they are more sensitive to different kinds of medications. They have a flexible spine, which makes it trickier.
One of the most essential things for cat first aid is a thick bath towel. Because when a cat is injured and they have a flexible spine, you’re able to safely grab them, take them, and be able to medicate them.
The other thing is, even though it isn’t a pet emergency kit for cats, we recommend that you have top-loading carriers so that you can load an injured cat easily into the top. Here we go, with the Pet Safety Cat Casey. Leave the towel in there with the cat because it has their smell, gives them a hidey-hole, and gives you a little bit of a protective barrier.
And the other thing that may surprise people is if you have an injured cat in your house, start closing the doors to other rooms first. Take your laundry basket, pop it over them, put cardboard underneath, and you have a temporary makeshift carrier. Those are some things that might surprise people about first aid for cats.
HYDROGEN PEROXIDE: DOGS VS. CATS
Chloe DiVita, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 7:00
So, now, everyone who has a cat can be more prepared to have the proper things in your pet first aid kit because it’s just important to make sure that you’re thinking about your pet, your cat, your dog. And in these discussions that we had, the idea of is hydrogen peroxide good or bad for dogs and cats came up.
Jessica Shipman, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 7:19
So, of course, we went back to Denise and Arden to get their take to find out if hydrogen peroxide is safe for dogs and/or cats. And if so, how can we use it?
Denise Fleck, Pet Safety Crusader – 7:29
The main purpose of our dog first aid kit is to induce vomiting. It has to be 3% peroxide, fresh, bubbly, and within its expiration date or it won’t do the job. And it also can never have gotten too hot. But before you induce vomiting check with your vet or poison control to make sure that is the appropriate course of action.
If needed, you would administer a tablespoon for every 10 to 15 pounds through a syringe, eyedropper, or turkey baster. And within 30 seconds to five minutes, it typically works. And the dog empties his stomach contents. There can be some soreness, but this is our best at-home remedy for inducing vomiting for dogs.
Arden Moore, Pet First Aid 4 U – 8:08
I’m so glad that you’re bringing this up and so is Pet Safety Cat Casey.
Do not ever use hydrogen peroxide on your cat externally to clean a wound.
You will damage healthy skin tissue. People think that bubbling action means things are going well. Their physiology is different from ours. Things are not going well.
The only rare exception for using hydrogen peroxide on a cat is if they got into something toxic and they’re not vomiting. You can give it orally with veterinary guidance.
Jessica Shipman, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 8:46
I’m glad that we finally have the facts about hydrogen peroxide. So keep that in mind if you have a cat or a dog and you need to perform any first aid.
But now that we have all our supplies and equipment, we know what we should put in a pet first aid kit, there are a few things that you might not think about that are not so much supplies but are information.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION FOR FIRST AID KITS
Chloe DiVita, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 9:05
These are important, not only for you to have handy, just so they are there and ready to go. But it is also important, like we mentioned in the beginning, for a pet sitter or someone staying with your pets when you’re not around. And that is, vet records, showing your pets are up to date on their vaccinations. And any issues they may have. For instance, I have a dog that has Addison’s disease. That’s important for people to know. So have your pet’s vet records and the number to your vet, just in case.
Jessica Shipman, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 9:30
And if you don’t have that number memorized, it’s great to have it actually on a physical piece of paper and put it in your phone as well. And then, in addition, to your regular vet, you also want to think about emergency vets. If you are going to be somewhere special or if maybe something happens in off-hours, you want to know who you can contact right away and not have to google it or look it up on the internet.
On top of that, poison control. If your dog or your cat gets into something that they shouldn’t, then having that number at your disposal right away can save you some of those very valuable seconds if your dog or cat is experiencing poisoning.
Chloe DiVita, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 10:05
Overall, we hope you took away what you can put in your kit, why you need the kit, and a few extra special things like vet records that are just super helpful to have handy in your kits.
And if you learned something, we would love to know what it is. So, please comment below and tell us what you learned. Do you have something else you put in your kit that you want to share with us? Tell us that too, we want to hear it all.
Jessica Shipman, All Pet Voices Co-Founder – 10:27
And if you love videos just like this one that can help you care better for the pets that you love, whether they are dogs, cats, or guinea pigs, be sure to subscribe to our channel so that our latest videos show up in your inbox.
For more information on Denise Fleck, the Pet Safety Crusader, and Arden Moore at PetFirstAid4U:
Pet Safety Crusader – www.petsafetycrusader.com
PetFirstAid4U – www.petfirstaid4u.com