Emergencies can occur anytime and the best thing to do is be prepared. Having a first-aid kit ready will help to reduce anxiety if an emergency does happen. Keep the kit readily available and periodically check to make sure all the items are up to date and present. A small plastic toolbox or fishing tackle box works well to hold all the necessary equipment.
On the outside of the box, write your name, address and telephone number in case you lose it. Also include the telephone number of your veterinarian as well as the telephone number of a local veterinary emergency facility.
If someone is taking care of your pets while you’re away, be sure to discuss your pets with them. Make sure they understand what you consider an emergency, how to contact you, the name and phone number of a secondary contact person you trust to make decisions on your behalf if you were unavailable, and where to take your pet in case of an emergency. You may want to consider leaving a credit card number to pay for any unplanned expenses relating to your pet’s health.
Once the emergency information is complete, it’s a good idea to have separate information sheets for each pet. Include a photo of each pet with the name, age, breed, sex, identification (microchipping information), and any health problems. This can help if your pet is lost or if someone unfamiliar with your pet is needed to care for him.
What to Put in a Dog’s First-Aid Kit
A well-stocked first aid kit for dogs includes:
Some cotton balls
Hydrogen peroxide (check the expiration date)
Pediolyte® or other balanced electrolyte fluid
Baby food – meat flavors work best
1 inch white tape (in addition to gauze tape)
Rolls of elastic wrap
Emergency ice pack
Thermometer (both oral and rectal thermometers can be used rectally)