What every pet parent should have on hand

For dog and cat owners, ensuring your beloved companions’ well-being is a top priority. And just like having a first aid kit for yourselves and your family, having one tailored to your dog or cat is equally crucial – after all, they’re family too. 

Dr Tanya Trenoweth, head of MediPet’s inhouse vet team, says – “While it’s vital to remember that certain human medications are unsafe for pets, preparing a pet-specific first aid kit can be super helpful in minor emergencies. It’s also good to have an idea of how to tend to our fur-family members when they start displaying signs of distress, or in some cases, how to pick up the signs when they’re trying to mask their pain.”

MediPet has compiled a comprehensive guide to the top items you need when assembling your pet’s first aid kit. (It’s important to please remember that this doesn’t replace a vet when your pet is feeling poorly.):

  1. Digestive distress: “I always keep Diomec paste handy at home. If my dogs have a stool that isn’t as firm as usual (this could be from drinking sea water at the beach for example), I’ll give them a dose and it often sorts out their tummy. Other pastes like Prokolin or Canigest are reliable alternatives,” explains Dr Tanya.
  1. Gastrointestinal support: Activated charcoal aids in gastrointestinal issues, as well as probiotics like Protexin. However, if your pet is vomiting, rather get them to the vet.  
  1. Wound care: “I like to keep a disinfectant that contains chlorhexidine to clean a wound or a sore. Hibitane and Biotaine are pink disinfectants that you can get from your vet. There are also soap-based versions which are very helpful for cleaning a dirty paw with a cut, for example. Ask your vet for a small bottle to keep at home. They’re diluted before use, so a small bottle lasts a long time.”
  1. Additional wound care advice: Keep cotton wool on hand and gauze swabs with it to clean wounds, as well as some antibacterial cream for small cuts and grazes. Gauze bandaging material is a worthwhile addition to keep larger wounds closed while you’re on the way to your vet. Gloves are also handy, and so are a pair of scissors to cut the gauze bandage.
  1. Eye & wound flushing: Saline solution and clean syringes serve multiple purposes such as flushing out wounds and eyes, should they have something irritating in them. However, persistent issues do require a vet’s attention as they can check for corneal ulcers or foreign bodies. 
  1. Ear care: Include ear flush and wipes for regular ear cleaning as it removes wax out of ear folds. “I recommend weekly ear cleaning with a good ear wash like Epiotic – it’s also good to do this after a swim or groom. If there’s an ear infection deep in the ear canal, you will see the wash coming out dark brown, then you know it’s time to go to the vet for a good look in those ears.”
  1. Essential tools: “Nail clippers & tweezers are indispensable. Trimmed nails are less likely to get hooked and tear. And tweezers are worth having if you’re searching for a grass seed in between the toes, or if you can see a splinter under the skin.”

Dr Tanya from MediPet adds that while a first aid kit is beneficial, always seek professional vet guidance when in doubt. “By assembling a pet-specific first aid kit and knowing when to seek professional help, you can provide immediate care while ensuring your furry companions receive the necessary attention during emergencies. Your preparedness could be the difference between a minor issue and a major health concern for your beloved pets.”

For more information from MediPet, visit their website or follow them on Facebook & Instagram.

MediPet is an Authorised Financial Services Provider FSP 32613 – Underwritten by Renasa non-life insurer.

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