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Just like people, pets can fall victim to accidents, sudden injuries or illnesses that require first aid. A prepared owner can help save a pet’s life. The American Red Cross has named April National Pet First Aid Awareness Month and has published a list of recommended supplies to include in a well equipped pet first aid kit. 

We suggest having several pet first aid kits for emergency situations (one for the house and another for the car) so that you’re always prepared. The following supplies should be kept in a clearly-labeled waterproof container:

  1. Latex or hypoallergenic material gloves
  2. Variety of sized gauze spongers
  3. Roll gauze
  4. Elastic cling bandage to apply bandages or splints
  5. Material to make a splint (rolled up newspaper can be used)
  6. Adhesive tape to help make bandages
  7. Non adherent sterile pads
  8. Small scissors
  9. Tweezers
  10. Magnifying glass
  11. Nylon leash
  12. Towel
  13. Muzzle (even normally friendly pets can be aggressive if injured or sick)
  14. Compact emergency “blanket” for cold weather or shock, which can also  be used as a stretcher to help move an injured pet
  15. Water-based sterile lubricant
  16. 3% hydrogen peroxide (can be used to induce vomiting)
  17. Topical antibiotic ointment
  18. Antiseptic towelettes
  19. Instant cold pack
  20. Baby dose syringe or eye dropper
  21. Sterile eye lubricant
  22. Sterile saline wash  to flush eyes or wounds
  23. Safety pins (medium sized 4)
  24. Glucose syrup or paste can be used to help with low blood sugar at the recommendation of your veterinarian
  25. List of emergency phone numbers, including:
  • Your family veterinarian
  • Newtown Veterinary Specialists open 24/7/365 at 203-270-VETS (8387)
  • Animal Poison Control: 1-888-426-4435 (a consult fee applies)

Pet first aid kits already assembled can be purchased at www.redcross.org where you’ll find a lot more information on emergency preparedness for pets and people.

Please remember not to give any medications (not even over-the-counter medications) to your pet without first consulting a veterinarian.  (See our previous post regarding the dangers of over-the-counter medication use in pets.)  Call Newtown Veterinary Specialists at 203-270-VETS (8387) if you have any questions and stay tuned for future postings on additional pet first aid tips!

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