In our household our pets are our kids, and like all youngsters they get into trouble every now and then. It could be a goofball jump, a bite from an unsuspecting critter or just plain silliness but when our pets hurt themselves it’s a heart-rending moment.
We had our own little scare ~2 weeks ago when Polly sliced her paw on some glass. We initially thought she’d gone limp, maybe from Lyme Disease (which we’d just been treated for…more on that later), but a trip to the vet 30 miles away tested nothing amiss and the cut was well enough hidden that the clinic didn’t catch it. Later that day after more limping, we did a full prodding and finally found the source of the problem. With our own little home-emergency kit we treated her for the cut. Wash, disinfect, wrap (a sock did the job for walks) and restricted activity until it healed. She’s now back to her old goofy self and will undoubtedly get into more trouble, but the incident just reminded me how important it was to have a home-kit ready.
So, how do you prepare? When you’re out in the wild and free you can’t be ready for every moment, but there’s lots you can do on the road if something goes wrong. Here’s our list:
1/ Know Where the Vets Are: Whenever we get into a new campground we usually try to ask where the nearest vet is. It’s rare we’ve had to use this info, but the few times we did it was invaluable.
2/ Make a Home Emergency Kit: There’s several key things we always have on-hand both for ourselves and our pets (more detailed list here):
- Epsom Salts and antibacterial soap (for soaking & cleaning)
- Disinfectant (e.g. Betadine) & antibiotic ointment (e.g. Neosporin)
- Gauze, pads & tape (to wrap any injuries)
- Cotton balls
- Benadryl (for allergic reactions or stings)
- Hydrogen peroxide (to induce vomiting)
- Rehydrating salts
- Sterile saline (for eyes)
3/ Get Doggie Used to Touching: We do a lot of training w/ Polly and one of our games is to reward (treat) her for being touched. So, we’ll prod, massage, feel every part of her body including her paws, teeth, ears etc. This is an important part of pet emergency which many don’t think of before it’s too late. If you make it a fun game you can get your pet very relaxed about touching and that can be invaluable when it comes to an accident.
Well, we’re off to the boonies to make more trouble, so here’s a big sloppy dog-lick to keep you company until our next enthralling post.
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