April is Pet First Aid Awareness Month, so 1 FUR 1 Foundation would like to take this opportunity to remind pet owners about the importance of knowing pet first aid. An emergency situation with a pet is very frightening, but knowing what to do when something bad happens can ease both your and your pet’s anxiety. Pet owners should learn pet first aid in order to ensure their pet’s safety. Pet first aid is not, however, the only thing to do when an emergency occurs. Pets should also be taken to the vet to be checked out in order to make sure everything is okay.
First aid should be administered for a pet who has suffered from seizures, poisoning, electrical shock, heatstroke, and choking, among other emergencies. Companies such as the American Red Cross, Pet Tech, and some local animal hospitals offer pet first aid courses to better educate pet owners. Taking these courses will make owners more effective in an emergency, which will protect their pet from greater suffering or injury. For those of us who are more technologically savvy, pet first aid apps are from Jive Media and American Red Cross for both Android and iPhone.
Some accidents are easily preventable. According to Thom Somes, “preventable accidents are the leading cause of death and disability among pre-senior dogs and cats”. Pet owners should do things such as put up gates leading to pools, attend pet first aid courses, and keep pets on leashes, to keep their pets out of harm’s way. Keep nails trimmed on all pets, especially birds, in order to avoid snagging them on items in their environment. Use antibiotic ointment on small wounds or abrasions. For injured reptiles, place them in a diluted Betadine bath for at least five minutes with constant supervision. For injured fish, test for ammonia, nitrates, pH, and phosphates. Pet Smart offers free water testing and most pet stores or aquatic stores offer home test kits. De-chlorinators, aquarium salts, and vitamins should be used in tanks to keep all inhabitants healthy and happy.
Other situations cannot be prevented, but should be handled safely and calmly. Owners should figure out a disaster plan that all members of the family should know in case of house fires or natural disasters. This will make sure that everyone knows what they are doing and will keep everyone is safe. It is always important to comfort your pet and watch for any signs of distress. Always take your pet to a vet after any accident or natural disaster where they may have been harmed.
In order to help pet parents and cause supporters, 1 FUR 1 Foundation provides unbiased information that helps animals and people in need. In addition to offering financial and operational grants to at-risk animal-assisted programs throughout the U.S.A. Please consider helping 1 FUR 1’s mission by donating today. Our animals thank you for your contribution!