Dog first aid: emergency dog care and first aid

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Dog first aid: emergency dog care and first aid

Post by pmcrae71 » Sun Jul 05, 2009 1:05 pm

*Mod Edit - IF in ANY doubt... call a vet first before looking for solutions online/in books*

We had talked about 1st aid care dogs and emergencies such as CPR...
I was concerned about copy rights with posting information from the book Essential field care for dogs and I found a website from Dr.'s Foster and Smith. They outline in detail how to do CPR, Rescue breathing and the heimlich maneuver.

This is the link I found for them. They have info on how to make a first aid kit and an emergency kit for dogs; they have alot of other stuff from snake bits to poisonings....

Hope you find this info useful

Joined:Sat Jul 05, 2008 5:33 pm

Post by Marley » Sun Jul 05, 2009 6:34 pm

If there is a class available in your neighborhood, I highly recommend attending. We were able to practice on dog/cat CPR dummies. Which increases the likelihood It will be done correctly if it is ever needed.

Joined:Tue Mar 17, 2009 2:31 am

Post by wvvdiup1 » Mon Jul 06, 2009 2:11 am

Thanks for that link! I'm sure Paul&Muttley would like the one link for skunk potions! :D


Joined:Tue May 19, 2009 8:59 am
Location:Orlando, FL

Post by pmcrae71 » Mon Jul 06, 2009 7:15 am

You are very welcome. There is a lot of information on this site... I was surprised with what all is there. Hope this becomes a great source for the others here. I just hope no one REALLY needs it... for the CPR and recuse breathing part anyway

Joined:Tue Mar 17, 2009 2:31 am

Post by wvvdiup1 » Thu Jul 23, 2009 8:27 pm

I've just found another site for First Aid for Dogs.

The site is called Just For The Dogs: The Dog Lovers, and under one of the subtopics, click "First Aid for Dogs" or you can just go right to the site at: ... d-for-dogs.


Mary Ellen
Joined:Tue Aug 04, 2009 11:33 am

Find those important emergency contact numbers

Post by Mary Ellen » Tue Aug 04, 2009 11:40 am

Just a recommendation:

If you haven't already done so, please find those important emergency contact numbers and post them in a convenient, easy-to-find spot, so you can easily -- and QUICKLY -- find them while you're in the middle of dealing with a pet emergency. Consider programming them into your cell phone, as well.

I recommend, at a minimum:
- your vet
- the nearest after-hours emergency vet
- an emergency pet poison control hotline

Ours are now posted on the inside of a kitchen cabinet. I wish they'd been there late one recent Saturday night when BOTH of my puppy-dogs were bitten by a copperhead snake.

Here's hoping you never need them. :)

Mary Ellen

Joined:Tue Mar 31, 2009 8:07 am
Location:South Florida

Post by maximoo » Sat Aug 15, 2009 9:57 pm

I took Max to the vet today for his pink eye and he was not eating and when he did eat he hurled it all up. (he had stolen a spicy jamaican beef patty and ate the plastic paper too 2 dys ago) So $335 later :twisted: he was dx'd with gastritis and mild conjuntivitis. Vet said to always have these meds in the house: Mylanta, an anti-diarrheal, eye ointment and possibly Reglan (for vomiting.) He said: All (most) dogs will need one of these at one time or another.

Joined:Wed Dec 03, 2008 8:31 am
Location:A little gambling town in the high desert

Post by Fundog » Tue Sep 01, 2009 9:52 am

Here's an article in Gun Dog Magazine about canine first aid. It's by their contributing vet. Here's the link, if you want to read it: ... index.html

Joined:Tue Oct 27, 2009 6:43 pm

Post by jjphoenix » Sun Nov 15, 2009 7:42 pm

i've done an animal aiders course, it was really good and their all over UK, heres the website
money can buy a dog but only love will wags its tail - DEED NOT BREED

Joined:Sun Dec 10, 2006 2:20 pm
Location:UK (Hull)

Re: Dog first aid: emergency dog care and first aid

Post by loza123 » Mon Mar 01, 2010 7:23 pm

I am studying animal management and we actually had to do this very list in animal health :)
We came up with:
Pen and paper
Vets contact details
Cotton wool
Vet wrap

Joined:Mon Sep 06, 2010 7:57 pm

Re: Dog first aid: emergency dog care and first aid

Post by Desiree » Sat Oct 16, 2010 1:56 pm

In the US the Red Cross offers animal first aid and CPR classes. I went to one at our local center. For around $20 you get a book with a DVD on how to handle many situation until you can get to a vet. It also has a list of what you should get for a first aid kit, and how to transport or move a hurt animal. I thought it was pretty informative. If you can't go to one of those, if you have ever taken infant CPR classes, the breaths and compressions are pretty similar. By that I mean you would breathe into the dog with about the same amount of air as you would an infant and do the compressions about the same depth. I have to get cpr certified for work yearly and I was suprised by how similar it was. One thing to keep in mind I learned, if by some chance a dog has a tracheostemy (sp?) you have to give the breaths thru that. Reading that you might think, well duh, but in the heat of the moment, you have been trained one way and thats what you remember, and with a trach dog that wouldn't work.

Joined:Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:47 pm
Location:Bradford, Rhode Island, USA

Re: Dog first aid: emergency dog care and first aid

Post by Blappy1215 » Sun Mar 13, 2011 5:47 pm

Desiree I took that class on pet first aid as well and a few others from the red cross out of all the red cross classes this is the only one I have ever had to use. I saved a cat that had been hit by a car on my way home from work.
"Don't worry honey right after the dog, your number one."

Joined:Wed Nov 03, 2010 7:42 pm

Re: Dog first aid: emergency dog care and first aid

Post by SmallBarkBigBite » Thu May 05, 2011 6:28 pm

The Red Cross offers a pet first aid course which I highly recommend, at least that's where I took mine a few years back. Learning CPR for a dog is invaluable I think.

Joined:Tue Mar 17, 2009 2:31 am

CHOKING: First Aid for Canine Choking

Post by wvvdiup1 » Wed Aug 17, 2011 3:21 pm

First Aid for Canine Choking - Canine Heimlich

Knowing what to do - when your pet can't breathe

Seeing a dog that might be choking is a frightening occurrence for anyone. This type of pet emergency doesn't happen often, but it's worth knowing the basics of first aid for canine choking in case you are ever faced with this situation. First, you must determine if the animal really is choking on a foreign object. If so, you can try to carefully fish the object out of the dog's throat. If unsuccessful, you can attempt a modified version of the Heimlich maneuver usually used on humans. Whatever rescue methods are used, contact an emergency veterinarian right away. This step-by-step guide includes more details to help prepare you and provides references for further education.

Is your dog choking? Image

What sounds like choking actually may be a symptom of another condition. Difficulty breathing or choking noises can also occur from conditions such as kennel cough or vomiting. (Note that these conditions may be serious and also require prompt medical attention.)

You'll want to make absolutely sure your dog really is choking before attempting to dislodge any object from its throat—any rescue attempts risk causing injury to your dog and increase your risk of getting inadvertently bitten.

Choking occurs when dog swallows food, bone, a fragment of a toy or another object incorrectly and the object gets stuck in the trachea. A dog that is truly choking will have difficulty inhaling as well as exhaling.

Symptoms of choking include:

Lips or tongue turning blue from a lack of oxygen
Pawing at the mouth
Difficulty breathing
General agitation

Whether breathing difficulties occur from choking or another condition, call a veterinarian immediately. If your dog can still partially breathe, your best solution is to focus your efforts on getting it to a veterinarian right away.

Attempt to remove the object

When dealing with any pet emergency, stay calm but move quickly and deliberately. Your dog may be able to sense your panic, and this will only upset it more.

First, carefully open your dog's mouth and see if you can see a foreign object. Be very cautious, a choking dog may panic and reflexively bite.

If you can see a foreign object, and you're sure the dog won't bite, sweep your fingers from the side of the dog's throat to the center to try to remove the object. You can also use tweezers or a small pair of pliers. Always use caution not to push an object further down the dog's throat.

Don't reach down your dog's throat and pull at objects that you can't identify; dogs have small bones inside their throats that can be damaged if you pull on them.

A modified Heimlich

If you can't remove the foreign object manually, try to raise your dog's rear legs above its head. If you have a small dog, hold it with its head facing down, with its back against your stomach. In the case of a larger dog, bend over behind it and lift its rear legs. Sometimes this position alone will help dislodge the object.

If the object still hasn't come free, use a modified version of the Heimlich maneuver to try and dislodge the object. The objective: to sharply push air out of the lungs and push the object forward out of the throat.

For smaller dogs, while still holding the dog upside down against your chest, hold your fist in your hand just below the dog's rib cage. With both arms, pull in sharply five times to expel the object. For larger dogs, perform the same procedure from behind, while holding the back legs in the air.

If your dog has collapsed, place both hands on the sides of your dog's lower rib cage and apply quick thrusts, or strike the side of the rib cage firmly with the palm of your hand 3 to 4 times.

Stop to check the airway periodically to see if the object has become dislodged, and remove it if you can. Repeat thrusts until the object comes free or you arrive at the veterinarian's office.

Remember, don't spend a lot of time trying to remove the object at the expense of transporting your dog to the veterinarian—if you can't dislodge the object right away, concentrate on getting help as quickly as possible.

Avoiding an emergency

In cases of your pet's health, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

You can help prevent choking by:

Never giving a dog poultry or fish bones
Choosing toys designed specifically for dogs
Never giving a dog bones or chews that could be swallowed whole
Supervising your dog while he chews on bones, toys or other treats

The American Red Cross offers pet first aid classes in some areas. Check your local chapter to see when and where they are offered. Be prepared, and you could save a pet's life.


“Pet First Aid: Basic Procedures.” Website of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Accessed June 6, 2010, at:

“Pet First Aid.” Website of the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA). Accessed June 6, 2010, at: ... 55990a45fa

“Preparedness Can Lower Risk and Severity of Pet Injuries.” By Joseph Hahn, Information Specialist. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, College of Veterinary Medicine website. Accessed June 6, 2010, at: ... D=92&URL=0

“First Aid and Emergency Care.” By Roger W. Gfeller, DVM, Michael W. Thomas, DVM, and Isaac Mayo. Veterinary Information Network, Inc. Accessed June 6, 2010, at: ... ourceID=20

“Save a Life: Learn Animal CPR.” By Lori H. Feldman, DVM, Greenwich Veterinary Hospital, and Henry J. Feldman, M.D., NYU School of Medicine. Brochure accessed June 6, 2010, at:

“Heimlich For Your Dog.” By PetPlace Veterinarians. Accessed June 6, 2010, at: ... page1.aspx
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"Common sense is instinct. Enough of it is genius." -author unknown

Joined:Tue Mar 17, 2009 2:31 am


Post by wvvdiup1 » Thu Jun 28, 2012 7:32 am


Over the weekend, Science Blog reported new guidelines for pet CPR that every dog owner should be aware of.

Image For nearly 50 years, the American Heart Association, with the help of researchers and physicians from across the nation, has developed and disseminated guidelines on how best to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation on patients experiencing cardiac arrest. But no such evidence-based guidelines existed in the veterinary world. Perhaps as a result, while more than 20 percent of human patients who suffer cardiac arrests in the hospital survive to go home to their families, the equivalent figure for dogs and cats is less than 6 percent.

Now the Reassessment Campaign on Veterinary Resuscitation, or RECOVER, a collaborative effort of the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care and the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society, has arrived at the first evidence-based recommendations to resuscitate dogs and cats in cardiac arrest.

The Journal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care has published a series of articles that outline the new guidelines.

Recommended Practices:

Perform 100-120 chest compressions per minute of one-third to one-half of the chest width, with the animal lying on its side.
Ventilate intubated dogs and cats at a rate of 10 breaths per minute, or at a compression to ventilation ratio of 30 to 2 for mouth-to-snout ventilation.
Perform CPR in 2-minute cycles, switching the “compressor” each cycle.
Administer vasopressors every 3–5 minutes during CPR.

Using the new guidelines, the RECOVER team is developing an Internet-based training curriculum to certify clinicians in veterinary CPR. This certification is being peer-reviewed by the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care, much as the training materials for human CPR are accredited by the American Heart Association. The guidelines will be updated regularly, with the next RECOVER planned for 2017.

Image Chest compression techniques for medium, large, and giant breed dogs. (A) For most dogs, it is reasonable to do chest compressions over the widest portion of the chest to maximally employ the thoracic pump theory. Either left or right lateral recumbency are acceptable. (B) In keel-chested (ie, deep, narrow chested) dogs like greyhounds, it is reasonable to do chest compressions with the hands directly over the heart to employ the cardiac pump theory, again in either recumbency. (C) For barrel-chested dogs like English Bulldogs, sternal compressions directly over the heart with the patient in dorsal recumbency may be considered to employ the cardiac pump mechanism.

Image Chest compression techniques for small dogs and cats. (A) For most cats and small dogs (<10 kg) with compliant chests, the use of a 1-handed technique to accomplish circumferential chest compressions with the hand wrapped around the sternum directly over the heart may be considered. (B) An alternative chest compression method for cats and small dogs is the 2-handed technique directly over the heart to employ the cardiac pump mechanism. This method may be considered in larger cats and small dogs with lower thoracic compliance, or in situations in which the compressor is becoming fatigued while doing 1-handed compressions.


There is strong evidence, including an experimental study in dogs documenting increased rates of ROSC and 24-hour survival, supporting a recommendation for compression rates of 100–120/min in cats and dogs (I-A).[36] However, there is also some evidence that higher compression rates of up to 150/min may be even more advantageous, and further work in this area is needed.

There is also good evidence to support deep chest compressions of 1/3–1/2 the width of the thorax in most patients (IIa-A), with an experimental canine study showing a linear relationship between compression depth and mean arterial pressure, and multiple human clinical trials and experimental animal studies supporting these compression depths.[37-39] Finally, experimental studies in pigs have documented reduced coronary and cerebral perfusion when full elastic recoil between chest compressions is not permitted (ie, leaning).

Observational studies in people have shown a high prevalence of leaning during CPR. It is recommended that full chest wall recoil is allowed between compressions.
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"Common sense is instinct. Enough of it is genius." -author unknown

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