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Basic First Aid For Your Dog

We all know that dogs are inquisitive things. They love sticking their noses into places, sniffing things they shouldn’t sniff and going where they shouldn’t go! Whilst being inquisitive is in a dog’s nature, it can occasionally result in your dog needing medical attention, and you could be required to perform basic first aid on your dog until you are able to get them to the vet.

In this blog post we talk about your doggy first aid kit and what you should have it in it, most common first aid requirements and what to do in an emergency. Of course we hope you will never be in the situation that you need to perform emergency first aid on your dog, but at least this way you are prepared just in case.

Your Doggy First Aid Kit

Ideally you should have 2 dog first aid kits, one in the house and one in the car. It needs to be easy to reach and doesn’t need to be huge with hundreds of medical items in it. Instead your dog’s first aid kit needs to have the following items;

  • A Thick Towel (large enough to cover your dog)

  • Surgical Tape

  • Bandages

  • Non-adhesive Dressings

  • Blunt-ended Scissors

  • Antiseptic Wipes

You may also want to consider having other items in your dogs’ first aid kit. Things like antibiotic ointment, gloves, cotton balls, pet wipes and other similar items that you think will come in handy when making quick fixes to nurse your dog back to health.

It’s a good idea to have your vets number inside your first aid box and also save it in your mobile phone, so if there is an emergency you have the details you need to hand.

Top Three Dog First Aid Needs

There are a variety of different accidents that could result in your dog needing first aid, but we have put together the three most common needs of first aid for your dog;


Just as you would if you burnt your skin, a burn on your dog must be put under cold running water for a minimum of 5 minutes. This will allow the temperature of the burn to cool.

While running the burn under cool water, it is important that the rest of your dogs’ body is kept warm so wrap them in a thick towel or blanket.

Food Poisoning

Due to the inquisitive nature of your dog, it is recommended that you keep things that could be of danger to them, out of the way. However, if your dog does accidently consume things like household cleaning items, your kids chocolate, or new plants in the garden, then they could get food poisoning.

The first thing you should do is try and figure out what your dog has consumed and then call your vet for advice on what to do next. Sometimes forcing your dog to be sick could cause more harm than good, so always ask advice from your vet.

Severe Bleeding

Bleeding is fairly common in dogs. If the cut is small it may bleed a lot, but it will usually heal itself. However, if your dog has a large wound that is open and bleeding excessively then you must cover the cut as quickly as you can, to prevent further blood loss.

You can do this by using a thick piece of material, like a towel, over the wounded area. You then need to cover it with a non-adhesive dressing and hold it down with cotton wool or tape. We would then recommend that you visit the vet as they will be able to properly flush out the wound, sterilise it and dress it properly.

What To Do In An Emergency

If there is an emergency and your dog needs urgent help then you must try to stay as calm as possible. Call your vet to tell them what has happened and check the nearest open practice so your dog can get the treatment they need.

While it may be tempting to deal with serious injuries yourself, we would recommend against it. Your pet could lash out when they are in pain, and this could injure you and cause further complications. Only give your dog food and water if your vet tells you to, otherwise make sure your dog has no food or water.

Again, we hope you never have any first aid emergencies with your dog, but we feel it is important to be prepared in case you do need to.

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