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Emergencies and first aid for your dog

Cuts must be carefully cleaned and disinfected. If jagged and very open, it is best to have it stitched by the vet If bleeding profusely first make certain it is not an artery (this would be bright red and pumping), bandage firmly with a pressure pad and leave for the blood to coagulate. Do not remove the dressing too soon as you could start the wound bleeding again If a small wound dust with antiseptic powder and leave. If an artery has been severed, put on a tourniquet in between the wound and the heart and take immediately to the vet. Never leave a tourniquet on for more than 20 minutes. Release for a few minutes so as to allow blood into the limb again.

Liquid plastic skin dressing applied to cuts on pads is very helpful for quick healing.

Broken bones need immediate veterinary attention.

Lameness can be caused by a strained muscle or tendon. Keep the dog quiet with a minimum amount of exercise. If this does not improve within a few days seek expert veterinary advice.

Teeth If your dog develops smelly breath or starts pawing its mouth or rubbing it along the ground, you can suspect tooth problems. Sometimes, in older dogs, ulcers and bad teeth can occur. These can be extracted if necessary by a veterinary surgeon, but a general anesthetic is necessary. A weekly marrow bone or hard biscuit will keep the teeth clean and in good condition If you find them getting dirty, persuade your dentist to let you have an old teeth scaler and gently scrape the teeth but be careful not to damage the gums. If your dog is uncooperative a visit to the vet is indicated.

Anal Glands Two glands situated on either side of the anus. If the dog is producing good firm stools the anal glands will usually be emptied. If you notice your dog rubbing its bottom along the ground it is probably due to the anal glands. Get your vet to show you how to empty them - it is not too difficult. just a case of squeezing in the right place!

Ears Examine these regularly to make certain they are clean and free from wax. Calamine lotion is excellent for cleaning ears. Soak a tissue in it and then clean. If the wax is a dark reddish color there is an infection. Your vet will) give you an ointment to put in the ear night and morning which will soon clear this up. If the ear is sore and has a pus-like, smelly discharge, your dog is suffering from otitis (canker). Professional advice is best sought in this case.

Constipation A dessert spoon of liquid paraffin should do the trick but if it persists and the dog keeps on straining a blockage of the bowel can be suspected. Seek veterinary advice.

Feet Check to see that nails are kept short and trim with nail cutters if necessary. Be careful not to cut the quick, which will bleed.

Thorns These can be painful and sometimes very hard to remove. Soften the surrounding area by applying a hot compress and then extract with tweezers. Dab with disinfectant, dry carefully and dust with antiseptic powder. Make certain you have got rid of all the thorn.

Stomach Torsion or Bloat  This is a horrible complaint. It is caused by the stomach twisting over on its axis thus stopping the gases from dispersing by either mouth or bowels. Usually associated with excessive exercise after a heavy meal.
The stomach becomes completely distended and immediate veterinary attention must be sought. The vet will operate and return the stomach to its normal position. If this is not done quickly this condition will prove fatal. Can occur again.

Heat Stroke This is an emergency which requires immediate attention. Dogs left in cars, tied up in the full sun, or left in concrete runs without suitable shade can all develop heat stroke Special care must be taken to provide shade for your dog when living in hot climates. Heat stroke starts with rapid, frantic breathing. The tongue and mucous membranes are bright red and the dog will start staggering. Put it in a tub of cold water or hose down with a garden hose. It is imperative to bring the temperature down as quickly as possible or this will prove fatal. Ice packs around the body (packets of frozen food can be used) will also help.

Stings If your dog has been stung by a wasp, bee etc., remove the sting where possible and give antihistamine tablets. If the sting is on the eye or tongue and there is excessive swelling, consult your vet immediately.

 

 


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About Your Dog, is your online ressource of articles on puppy and dog health, dog training and information about your pet dog