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First Aid for Your Puppy

First Aid for Your Puppy

A puppy is an extension of your family and just like you have a first aid kit in the house for any bumps or scrapes the human members of the household might suffer, you should be equally prepared for any mishaps for your pup.

Having a first aid kit specifically created with your pup in mind should be at the top of your puppy essentials list when you are figuring out what you need to buy for your new family member. Remember, first aid is meant to stabilize your pup’s condition until proper medical care can be reached.  When in doubt, err on the side of taking your dog to the vet.

Here at Happy Pup Manor, we keep your pup’s health and safety in mind always. That’s why we put together a list of items you should think of including in your puppy’s first aid kit!

Antibacterial Ointment

The most common injuries you’re likely to encounter when it comes to your puppy are cuts and scratches. Applying a small amount of antibacterial ointment helps to keep your pup’s injury clean of harmful bacteria that can lead to an infection.

Keep an eye on your pup after applying – they like to like wounds and ingesting the ointment may lead to an upset stomach and will reduce the effectiveness of the application.  Try to target applying right before bed when they are already drowsy, and if they are persistently licking the ointment off consider using a v-collar to restrict their access to the wound.

Gauze Pads and Wrap

Keeping gauze pads handy is great in case of an open wound.  Apply your antibacterial ointment and secure the gauze in place using Vet Wrap. This self-adhesive bandage roll is a great way to keep gauze where they need to be without having to try and pin or tape a bandage on your puppy.  That’s right, vet wrap sticks to itself and not your pup’s fur, making it very easy to apply and remove!

Rectal Thermometer and Petroleum Jelly

Your pup can get a temperature just like you and me. Recording your pup’s temperature is important, especially if you suspect they are ill or have not been acting like their usual self. Investing in a durable digital thermometer to keep track of your pup’s temperature will help get ahead of any illness your puppy may develop. If your pup’s temperature rises above 104 degrees Fahrenheit or drops below 99 degrees Fahrenheit, take your pup to be examined by a professional. If you have been monitoring your pup’s temperature over the course of a few days, be sure to relay that information to your veterinarian as well.

We also recommend keeping a small tub of petroleum jelly in the kit to help the rectal thermometer slide in painlessly.

Disposable Gloves

Keeping a pack of disposable gloves in your kit is great for when there are accidents. Not only will the gloves keep your hands clean, but they will also keep any cuts or injuries clean of bacteria and free of infection.

Hydrogen Peroxide and Administration Syringe

Sometimes your pup can get into things they shouldn’t.  If this happens, IMMEDIATELY contact your veterinarian and be ready to describe how much they swallowed and of what type of material.  The vet will be best equipped from hundreds of cases to know whether it is safer for it to pass through the body or whether it is best to immediately eject the substance.

In the event you need to induce vomiting you need to be prepared with 3% hydrogen peroxide at home.  If you are reading this and don’t know what % the hydrogen peroxide in the medicine cabinet is, please go check now!

Recommended protocol per the Whole Dog Journal:

  • 5 mL of 3% hydrogen peroxide (1 teaspoon) per 5 lbs of the dog’s body weight, with a maximum of 45 mL (9 teaspoons). To reiterate, the maximum dose for dogs over 45 lbs is 45mL.
  • This should lead to vomiting within 2-5 minutes.
  • If the dog does not vomit within 5 minutes it is OK to re-dose once.
  • If there is no vomiting at the 10-minute mark, you should be on the way to the emergency vet

Pups tend to not want to swallow hydrogen peroxide just from its strong smell, so it will be easiest to administer using a needleless syringe.  Tip your pup’s head up and insert the syringe between their back teeth.  Try not to squeeze the full amount into their mouth at once, but you should administer at a brisk pace – the longer the peroxide is in their mouth, the more chance they will struggle and spit out an unknown amount of the dose.

Benadryl

If your pup eats food they’re allergic to, or gets stung by an insect and has a reaction, Benadryl is a safe medication you can give to your puppy to ease reaction symptoms.  This is another situation where you should immediately call the vet to get their advice on the best course of action, and you are making sure you have Benadryl on hand to be able to get relief to your pup as quickly as possible.  Never administer human grade medicine, even over the counter, to your pet without consulting a veterinarian.

The dosage is typically 1 mg per lb.

Syringe 

Dogs, just like kids, don’t always love taking their medicine!  If a dog spits out a liquid medication, they are not getting their full dose and it is impossible to know just how much they did in fact swallow.  This is why we prefer to use a needleless syringe for liquid medication administartion.

Training Tip: Use an old breeder trick for puppy de-worming – mix in some corn syrup every time to turn your pup from running away from the medicine bottle to running towards a sweet treat.  When the occasional liquid medication is required, keeping a syringe in your kit will make administering much easier.

Your Vet’s Name and Phone Number

In the event of a health emergency you will be frazzled – make doing the right thing simpler by having a checklist ready that includes:

  • Your Vet’s Name
  • Your Vet’s Address
  • Your Vet’s Phone Number
  • Dosage Instructions for Hydrogen Peroxide – if your dog is done growing then write in their weight and the appropriate dosage.

Make sure that every adult in the house knows where the first aid kit is.  Also advise anyone taking care of your animals while you are away such as a dog-walker or house-sitter.

Get in Touch with Happy Pup Manor! 

The team at Happy Pup Manor is here to help you when you’re welcoming a new pup to the family. From obedience and manner training to overnight boarding services, we are here for your puppy needs. If you’re interested in discussing our training and boarding options, get in touch today! We are always happy to discuss your pup with you!

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