How to deal with injuries in your family pet?
Photo by Juan Gomez on Unsplash
If your family pet becomes injured, it can be a scary situation for both your pet and your family members. Keeping a clear head and making a plan to deal with these injuries can help both your pet and your family navigate the situation.
It’s important to stay calm after your pet becomes injured. Your pet needs you to keep a clear head to get him or her the needed help. Your children will also be following your example and will likely follow it. Take a deep breath, speak in calm tones, and use clear instructions to express what you need to help your pet. Children and other family members who are upset should leave the room as this can cause a pet to become further agitated.
Prevent family members from becoming injured
Your pet will likely be in pain, be confused, and maybe agitated. This could cause your pet to act out, bite, or scratch others. Even the most docile pets could act out if they are injured. Never hug an injured pet or place your face close to theirs. Many people want to hug or hold their pet to calm them down, but this could make your pet feel more confused and cause an injury to your face. It could also possibly pass airborne germs to your pet’s injuries. Instruct your children to back away and not to touch the pet until he or she has been examined.
If your dog is not vomiting and doesn’t have a chest injury, consider using a muzzle on him or her to prevent injuries during an examination. This can be done by wrapping a gauze roll, stocking, or towel around your pet’s mouth. Cats and other small animals can be wrapped in a towel to keep them still during an examination.
Carefully examine your pet
After your pet has been muzzled or restrained, carefully perform an examination. Have everyone else leave the room first. Clear a space on the floor or table. Carefully place your pet on the surface. Caress them gently and speak in soothing tones as you look over your pet’s injuries. Look for any bleeding, protruding bones, or lacerations so that you can tell the veterinarian what you know about the injury.
Apply basic first aid at home
Take some steps to help stabilize your pet before seeking medical assistance. Carefully clean small wounds, clip away excess hair to get a better look at the wound site, and bandage or splint as many injuries as possible. This can help ease your pet’s pain and prevent the situation from worsening while they are transported to the veterinarian.
Consider using a brace
If your dog is injured but doesn’t have a broken bone, a brace may be the best option. Torn ligaments can cause your pet to limp and make healing difficult. Using a dog brace can stabilize their injury while you seek medical assistance or during the healing process. Braces may be more helpful at preventing a dog from playing than crating him or her. Braces can also be helpful for dogs who need surgery but aren’t candidates at this time.
Call the veterinarian
Call the veterinarian ahead of time and let them know you are bringing your pet in and what you know about his or her injuries. Keep the pet confined to a small area using a crate, pet carrier, or small box. Larger dogs can be transported using a small sled, rug or blanket that acts as a type of stretcher. Remember to bring your pet’s medical records with you to the vet.
After visiting the veterinarian, remember to follow their instructions. It’s a good idea to post-care instructions on the refrigerator so that they are easy to refer to as needed. Give them any necessary medication on the right schedule, keep their injures clean, and remember to keep all of your pet’s follow-up appointments. Doing so can help them heal in the best way possible.
No one likes to see their loved one injured; this is especially true of pets who are so vulnerable. Taking the right steps to help your pet deal with their injury can help your family stay safe and get your pet quickly on the road to recovery.