By Lindsay Craven
Emergency kits might inspire fear at the first mention of their name, but they aren’t necessarily tied to instances of disaster. Thanks to handy sites like Pinterest and Etsy, there’s inspiration for ways to create kits for both real emergencies or for those little emergencies that life throws at us daily. This column will explore ideas of items that could be essential for various types of emergency kits, so that you can be inspired and start your own. This month we’ll begin with an emergency kit for your four-legged friends.
A sealed and waterproof container is recommended when packaging your pet emergency kit. You’ll want something that’s easy to grab and carry and won’t add too much weight to your kit. Some good options would be a Tupperware container with a handle or a waterproof backpack or bag.
First and foremost, it is essential that you include a first-aid book for pets in your kit, unless you have a veterinary degree. Our furry friends can’t take the same medications or the same doses of medications that we can, and small amounts of some things harmless for a human can prove lethal in small animals, so it’s important to know what’s safe for them before jumping into action.
In instances of emergency, it is important that you can contain your pet while keeping yourself and your pet safe. Depending on the size of your pet, you’ll want to pack a blanket or pillowcase that you can complete ly wrap their body in while keeping you safe from fearsome bites or scratching. Small animals can easily be placed in a pillow case with their heads sticking out to immobilize their legs and body, while larger pets will need to be wrapped in a blanket or towel and held.
Hydrogen Peroxide can be used to induce vomiting in dogs when they’ve ingested something potentially toxic. It is extremely important to remember that you should never administer any kind of emergency care to your pet without a vet’s guidance. On your next vet visit, let them know you are preparing an emergency kit and ask what dosage your pet might need in case you needed to administer it and were unable to provide professional veterinary care. Each pet is different and will have different needs.
Cornstarch is a handy tool if you regularly clip your pet’s nails at home. For those instances when you cut the nail too close to the quick you can dab at the affected area with a bit of cornstarch and it will help stop the bleeding.
Another handy item to include in your kit is children’s Benadryl or 25mg. Benadryl tablets (not capsules), depending on the size of your pet. The general rule of thumb is that your pet can have five milligrams per five pounds of body weight. So a 25-pound pet could have one 25-milligram tablet. Again, it is very important to discuss dosages with your veterinary professional before administering, and also ensure that your pet has no medical conditions or allergies that could be worsened by the medication.
An easy thing to overlook in an emergency would be a collapsible bowl and water bladder. Selecting collapsible items will save space in your kit and allow you to include other important items. Your pet will also need sustenance just like the rest of your family in the event of an emergency, so make sure to include a bag of healthy food.