How to Make a First Aid Kit For Pets

by DFS-Pet-Blog on June 16, 2010

First-Aid-Kit **Guest post from Ellen B.**

Having a first aid kit is an important step in being prepared for any type of accident or natural disaster. First aid kits are just as much of an essential for pets as they are for humans.

The following checklist contains basic item suggestions as found in an article written by the veterinarians at Drs. Foster & Smith. To make a more extensive first aid kit, see their articles: Making a First Aid Kit for Your Dog or Making a First Aid Kit for Your Cat. Remember, it’s best to have a first aid kit in both your home and in your vehicle.

Key Items For a Basic First Aid Kit for Cats or Dogs:

Important Phone Numbers

  • Veterinary clinic phone number and directions to the clinic
  • Emergency clinic phone number and directions
  • Poison control center phone numbers

Bandaging Materials

  • First aid tape – both paper (easily comes off of skin) and adhesive types
  • Bandage rolls – gauze and Vetwrap

Equipment and Supplies

  • Muzzle, or roll of gauze for making a muzzle
  • Scissors
  • Tweezers
  • Nail clippers and metal nail file
  • Styptic powder or sticks, Kwik Stop, or cornstarch
  • Nylon slip leash
  • Clean towels – cloth and paper
  • Pet thermometer
  • Disposable gloves
  • Cold packs and heat packs (wrap in towel before using)

Nutritional Support

  • Rehydrating solution such as Gatorade or Pedialyte
  • Nutritional supplement such as Nutri-Cal, Vitacal, or Nutristat


Eye Clens® Eye Wash and Eye Pads - Wipe and rinse away your pet's eye irritations!

Eye Clens® Eye Wash and Eye Pads - Wipe and rinse away your pet's eye irritations!

  • Wound disinfectant such as Betadine
  • Triple antibiotic ointment for skin
  • Eye wash solution
  • Antidiarrheal medicine such as Pet Pectate
  • Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) for allergic reactions (obtain dose from your veterinarian)
  • Cortisone spray or cream, such as Itch Stop
  • Hydrogen peroxide (used to make a dog vomit – only use as directed by a veterinarian)
  • Activated charcoal to absorb ingested poisons (consult your veterinarian before using)

*Watch the expiration dates on any medication, and replace as needed.

If I’d add one of my own suggestions, it would be treats-particularly for dogs. If my dog knows he’s going to get a treat, he sits still better when I need to take a closer look at a problem. Leave a comment if you have another item that you suggest to have handy.

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June 16, 2010 at 8:12 am

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brittany June 16, 2010 at 7:34 am

Ziplock bags for tick-killing and/or emergency stool samples.

Ellen B. June 16, 2010 at 8:35 am

Brittany – Ziplock bags are an excellent idea. In an emergency type situation, I’d be willing to bet there would be several (unpredictable) uses for them. Plus, they take up such little space, might as well have a few in there. Thanks for your addition to the list!

Jen June 27, 2010 at 8:25 pm

This is terrific advice indeed…I may start putting one of these together this week.

By the way, I (and my tortie kitty) can vouch for the hydrogen peroxide. Lucy somehow gobbled down lily leaves the day after my birthday. I called the vet (and people Poison Control, perhaps keep that number on the top of your pet First Aid kit! 1-800-222-1222); she recommended I give Lucy a tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting before rushing her to my veterinarian. It probably saved her life by getting those leaves out of her system before they could be further digested.

Something else one may wish to keep around is an Elizabethan collar in case your pet is worrying a wound or bandage. Not fun for anybody, but it will help the animal heal faster.

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