When your dog is injured in an accident, it can be upsetting. You may panic or be overwhelmed by feelings of anxiety and helplessness.
However, you must remain calm to provide the best care for your pet. The first thing to do is to take note of the situation and your surroundings.
The following article lists some considerations, dos, and don’ts on how to handle your dog’s accident.
You need to stay calm. If you panic, it will only worsen the situation.
Instead of running around pointlessly or freaking out about what happened, assess the situation properly before deciding your next steps. If you didn’t witness the injury, determine what happened to your dog. Was he hit by a car? Bit by another animal? Or did he swallow something toxic?
Take note of where you are so that you can find help immediately if needed. Notice any obstacles that might hinder moving your pet so that medical assistance can arrive as soon as possible without any hindrances.
Check your dog’s condition
Once you have sorted out the situation, check your dog’s condition.
Veterinary clinics usually offer first aid courses for owners who want to learn what to do when their pets get hurt or sick. You can check out their websites or call them up for information about first aid care for pets. There are also resources on the Internet that provide free how-to guides and videos on dog first aid.
If possible, try to stand up and let your pet lean on your body so he can remain in a standing position while you check if there are injuries involved.
Determine whether your dog is struggling to breathe. If the pet has difficulty breathing because of something stuck in his throat, try using the Heimlich maneuver to remove the blockage. Make a fist and place it under the dog’s belly, near his ribcage. Then thrust your fist upwards repeatedly to dislodge the object.
If you can’t remove the item quickly, this is a life-threatening situation, and you need to call for a pet ambulance. If that service isn’t available where you live, you need to take your dog to an emergency vet immediately.
You can also give your dog small amounts of water and see how he responds. Sometimes injured dogs choke on their saliva or panic from the pain. Giving a dog small amounts of water can help calm him and ease his breathing.
Check for any broken bones or puncture wounds that might be bleeding. If your dog is bleeding but not in life-threatening danger, slow the bleeding by tightly pressing cloth over the injury and applying pressure.
If there is no cloth or anything you can use to stop the bleeding, apply pressure directly on the wound with your hands. As much as possible, avoid touching the blood with your bare hands. The last thing you want is to become infected and get sick if your dog is injured in an accident.
Transport your dog to the vet
If the condition doesn’t improve and your dog is in pain, go to a veterinary clinic so a medical professional can take an X-ray to determine if there is any internal bleeding or broken bones.
Bring your injured pet to your car and if possible, wrap him in a blanket or towel before you buckle him up with a seat belt. This will help prevent your dog from sliding on the seat and potentially causing additional injury. You might find it challenging to put the dog in this position because he is in pain. But stay calm to help keep your dog relaxed. If you can get another person to help you, get someone to sit in the backseat with your dog.
You will need money to pay for vet services. Although some offer payment plans, most require payment at the time of service. If you don’t have cash on hand, you can get a small loan to cover the cost of your dog’s medical expenses. Learn more at Growing Power.
Dealing with a sick or injured dog is stressful, but letting yourself become overwhelmed only makes the situation worse. Work with your veterinarian to determine the best treatment options for your dog. With a bit of luck, your dog will feel better soon.
If your dog is seriously injured, check with the vet hospital to see if you can visit during the recovery process. If that’s possible, it will help your dog heal. Some clinics don’t allow visitors, so if that happens, set up a time each day when you can consult with your vet on your dog’s condition.
While you can treat many injuries caused by accidents at home, know that treating some injuries requires professional assistance. If your dog loses consciousness, is bleeding, or has difficulty breathing, don’t delay. Go to your closest emergency vet clinic immediately.