Hopefully you’ve already gone through part one of our basic first aid for dogs, which would have given you some basics, and listed the supplies you need to keep in your first aid kit.
There are a few other things you need to know in order to keep your dog happy, safe and well-cared-for.
In case you missed the previous article, you can find it here.
Be aware, this article mentions some accidents you may find disturbing, so use your best judgment on reader discretion.
Basic Dog CPR
CPR should be used if your dog stops breathing, indicating a problem with his airway, or possibly an internal injury.
1. Get your dog on their side, then check to ensure breathing has stopped entirely, and is not merely shallow breathing.
2. Next you need to check for a blockage in their airway – do this by opening the mouth and pulling the tongue forwards slightly.
3. The obstruction may be an object, or it may be blood.
4. If you’re able to remove the blockage, do so, but make sure you protect yourself from being bitten.
5. If your pet’s breathing doesn’t naturally restart, then gently pull their head into an extended position, with their nose pointing forward and their mouth held closed.
6. Next, you will blow into your dog’s nose twice, and check for breathing and heartbeat.
7. If you hear no heartbeat, give fifteen chest compressions; one every second. The right spot is in the middle of the chest, just behind the front legs.
8. Go back and forth with two breaths through the nose, then fifteen chest compressions, until your pet revives.
if you are unsuccessful in reviving your pet after about three minutes, you should be aware that recovery is not likely.
First Aid For A Dog Who’s Been Poisoned
The most important thing you can do for your poisoned dog is to figure out what they’ve swallowed, and find the packaging to have on hand when you call the vet.
Sometimes dogs can get sick from eating or chewing plants; in that case, try to identify the plant.
Avoid inducing vomiting for your pet until after you’ve spoken to your vet.
However, if you think your dog has been poisoned, find the source quickly and call your vet’s emergency line.
First Aid For A Dog With A Swollen Stomach
A good idea for a swollen stomach is to immediately get your dog internal imaging so that the vet can see what’s really going on.
A swollen stomach can be the sign of something quite serious, especially if the dog is a boxer, or another breed with a deep chest.
If you see you pet gulping, heaving in order to vomit, or drooling saliva, there may be a twist in their stomach, and you should phone your vet immediately.
First Aid For A Dog Whose Coat Has Toxic Chemicals On It
Sometimes during a walk your pet comes across toxic chemicals, and may get some of the substance on their fur – be aware of this and take immediate steps to remediate, as described here.
If you need to use an Elizabethan collar, do so – they will want to lick and clean their coat or paws, but this substance is likely toxic and could poison your pet.
Never add more solvents – such as turpentine or paint thinner – in removing toxic substances.
You can try to bathe your dog in washing up liquid, or swarfega, but you may have to simply snip off the part of their coat that is affected.
If you have trouble cleaning your dog properly, or the area is simply too large, get them to the vet as soon as you can and enlist their help.
First Aid For A Dog With Heat Stroke
This is an important thing to look out for on not just hot, but even warm days.
If you notice your dog is panting heavily and seems upset, they may have heatstroke; short-nosed breeds such as Boxers are especially prone to this.
Get your pet out of the heat, and somewhere cool.
You can also give them a quick shower to wet their coat, and then put them under a fan or somewhere with moving air in order to create a bit of a cooling evaporation process.
You can also give your pet small amounts of water, and then call the vet to get their input on whether they want you to bring your pet in or not for a checkup.
First Aid For A Dog Who’s Drowning
First of all, make sure you never put yourself at risk of drowning in your attempt to rescue a dog.
Be aware that they may be panicked or scared, and may be prone to biting, even as you try to rescue them.
If you retrieve a dog from the water that is unconscious, wipe away any material from their nose and mouth.
To drain any water out of the dog’s lungs, you can carefully hold them upside down by their hind legs.
Provide resuscitation, as described in the above CPR section, and hopefully you will manage to revive your pup.
No matter how well your pet looks afterward, be sure to take them to get checked out by your vet, as it’s fairly common to see complications crop up afterward.
As a preventative measure, it’s a great idea to check the conditions of your local beach before letting your pet dive in headfirst.
First Aid For A Dog With An Eye Injury
If the injury is chemical in nature, do your best to flush out the eye with water, using something similar to an eye dropper.
If your pet’s eye is bulging out of its socket, prevent scratching or rubbing by applying a wet dressing to the area.
In both cases, call the vet immediately for further instructions.
First Aid For A Dog Who Just Had An Electric Shock
If the electric shock occurred at home, start by turning off your power at the switch box.
If you are unable to do this, you’ll need to find a dry, non-metallic tool – such as a plastic broom or even a chair – to push your dog away from the source of electricity. If not, you risk becoming electrocuted yourself.
If they’re not breathing, provide CPR as described above and have someone call your vet emergency line immediately.
If the shock is high-voltage, such as from a downed power line, do not approach your pet, and call the police.
Book An Appointment At Bickford Park Animal Hospital
If your pet has recently had a first aid emergency, it’s a good idea to have them checked out to make sure there are no lingering issues.
Call now to book an appointment at Bickford Park Animal Hospital and have your pet seen by an experienced vet.
Bickford Park Animal Hospital is a veterinary clinic in Toronto, located across from Christie Pits park, committed to the highest level of caring and treatment for cats and dogs.