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How to Make a First-Aid Kit for Dogs


What to put in your pet first-aid kit and why


When your dog suffers an illness, injury, or poisoning, knowing what first aid to do (and not do) can have a big impact on their recovery, safety, and comfort. It can also help your emotional stress, because you'll have a plan of action to follow whenever a problem arises. For these, and many other reasons, I always recommend that dog owners take a pet first-aid class. But that's not the end of the story.

Regardless of whether you've taken (or are planning to take) a first-aid class, you still need to have the supplies and "gear" handy to be able to administer first aid to your dog. And that's where having a good pet first-aid kit (or two) comes in.

Do you have a pet first-aid kit? If not, you really should — and this article will show you what you need in your dog's first-aid kit and why. 

If you already have a first-aid kit, when was the last time you checked and updated it? Have your stocks run low? Are the medications expired? Does it truly have everything you might need? (Many pre-made pet first-aid kits don't!)

Read on to see what your dog's first-aid kit should have, and what each of the items is necessary for.

Have a cat? Check out this first aid shopping list for cats.

Make Your Own Pet First-Aid Kit

To make it easy for you to put together (or check) your pet first-aid kit, we have a shopping list (for mobile or printable) for you to take to your nearest pharmacy to grab your dog's first-aid supplies.

Want to make it even easier for yourself (and likely cheaper, too)? We've sourced and linked to good quality/value examples of each of the first-aid items below. Each item on this list has been vetted for you to ensure that you're getting the right products and brands that will be most effective, practical, and safe for inclusion in your dog's first-aid kit. [Full Transparency: Product links are Amazon Affiliate links. Learn more here.]

Hopefully you'll never need to use your dog's first-aid kit. But, you never know, and well... Murphy's Law. So here's how to prepare...

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Topics: Cat Health, Dog Safety, Dog Health, Cat Safety, pet safety tips, pet safety, First Aid, Pet First Aid Kits, cat first aid, Pet First Aid, dog first aid supplies, dog first aid, Pet First Aid Supplies, Pet First Aid Kit

What to Know If You Want to Give Your Dog CBD


Is it a cure-all or snake oil?
 

If you have spent any time researching cannabis for dogs, and specifically cannabidiol (CBD), you have probably found yourself wondering whether these products are safe, and even if they will offer any real benefits for your pained, anxious, or elderly dog.

The simple story about CBD is that there is no simple story about CBD. Though CBD is a non-psychoactive chemical derived from cannabis that won’t get people or animals high like tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it still falls into both a medical and bureaucratic black hole where it can be nearly impossible to extract definitive information.

But we have done our best to stare into the CBD abyss and pull out as much as possible to help you decide whether it might be good for your dog. As you’ll soon see, vets are placed in a difficult position when talking about these products, but you will hopefully walk away from this article with enough information to help you make a more-informed decision.

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Topics: Dog, Dog Emergency, Dog Safety, Foods that aren't good for dogs, Marijuana toxicity, Pet First Aid, Warning Signs, marijuana, Anxiety in Dogs, Pain management, Arthritis in dogs

Marijuana, Cannabidiol & Dogs: Everything You Want (And Need) To Know


As of 2017, more than half the states in the country have enacted some form of marijuana legalization and more are expected to follow. But as perceptions about legal weed dramatically shift in the country, it forces us to address the elephant in the room — or, in this case, the dog in the room.

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Topics: Dog, Dog Emergency, Dog Safety, Foods that aren't good for dogs, Marijuana toxicity, Pet First Aid, Warning Signs

Why Hydrogen Peroxide Is NOT For Cleaning Pet Wounds


We vets see a lot of wounds (cat bite abscesses, skin cuts, abrasions, etc.) where well-intentioned pet owners have inadvertently slowed healing with the at-home care they’ve tried before bringing their pet in.

How have they done this? By using something you likely have in your medicine cabinet, and something that many people sadly reach for as a first line of defense when cleaning and treating a wound on their cat or dog (or even on themselves).

I’m talking about good ol' Hydrogen Peroxide.

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Topics: Cat Health, Dog Safety, Dog Health, Cat Safety, pet safety tips, First Aid, Pet First Aid Kits, Pet First Aid, Wounds

Bee & Wasp Stings — Be(e) Prepared


It's fast getting to be bee, wasp, and yellow jacket season. And that means that these insects, and the sting hazard they pose, will soon be present around your yard and in the parks and other places you walk and play with your dogs.

If your dog or cat is ever stung by one of these insects, or if they ever eat one (that's right Labs and Spaniels... I'm looking at you!), you may be able to treat them effectively at home, but you may well need to take them to the vet. The severity of any pet's reaction to a sting is difficult to predict and can be highly variable, even within the same pet on subsequent stings. So always be aware and know what to look for. Read More

Topics: pet safety tips, pet safety, Pet First Aid, dog first aid, Emergency Preparedness for Pets, Blog, Stings

Pet First Aid... Would You Know What To Do (and What NOT To Do)?


Have you taken a pet first aid course? Are you even aware that such courses exist? April is National Pet First Aid Awareness month, so this is a great time to talk about this important topic.

As is the case with people, timely and appropriate first aid can help your cats and dogs. From learning how to deal with a bee sting or cleanout and bandage a wound, to more advanced steps, such as safely transporting an injured pet or performing CPR, knowing first aid can provide you with peace of mind and your pets with a better chance of recovery from their illness, injury, or other emergency. Yet, sadly, too few people are even aware that pet first aid classes exist, let alone have ever taken one.

In our ongoing pet emergency preparedness survey only 21% of the respondents have taken a pet first aid course. Yet, over 71% of respondents report having needed veterinary emergency care for one of their pets.

As a veterinarian, I can tell you that there are many accident and emergency situations where timely and appropriate first aid can benefit your pets. Similarly though, it's also important that you know what NOT to do. And this is why I encourage every pet owner to learn the basic first aid knowledge that you can easily obtain from an accredited pet first aid course.

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Topics: pet safety tips, pet safety, cat first aid, Pet First Aid, dog first aid, Emergency Preparedness for Pets, Blog

Photo Credit: Preventive Vet

Please do not ask emergency or other specific medical questions about your pets in the blog comments. As an online informational resource, Preventive Vet is unable to and does not provide specific medical advice or counseling. A thorough physical exam, patient history, and an established veterinary-patient-client relationship is required to provide specific medical advice. If you are worried that your pet is having an emergency or if you have specific medical questions related to your pet’s current or chronic medical conditions, please contact or visit your veterinarian, an animal-specific poison control hotline, or your local emergency veterinary care center.

Please share your experiences and stories, your opinions and feedback about this blog, or what you've learned that you'd like to share with others.