We all love our pets and will do anything for them. However, one thing we aren’t doing is preparing for doggy emergencies. Just like humans, dogs can succumb to sudden medical conditions. Dogs can drown, have heart attacks, choke, and be poisoned, just like humans. Are you prepared for something like this to happen?
Thankfully, in the world of the internet, we can learn how to take care of many of these emergencies. This includes everything from simply checking the health of your dog to performing CPR. The best thing you can do for your dog is to take a class so you know exactly how to do this.
Obviously, your very first step if your dog is in immediate distress, or stops breathing, should be to contact your local animal emergency care provider. If your family vet is open and provides these types of services, that should be your call. Otherwise, you should have a list of a 24-hour emergency vet clinics and their telephone numbers handily on your refrigerator.
Ideally, you can have someone else do the calling while you get to work. If that’s not possible, quickly call the emergency vet number and begin the process.
First things first, check your dog’s vitals. You can easily tell if he is breathing by holding your hands on his chest. Then, check for a pulse on the femoral artery.
Next, check your dog’s airway. If you don’t know what happened to your dog, this is an important next step because CPR can’t be performed with obstructions.
If there’s an obstruction, lift your dog up and reach under his stomach, lifting him off the ground near his back legs. Shake a bit to try and dislodge the blockage.
If that doesn’t work, you need to do the doggy Heimlich maneuver. Holding your dog in the same position, rapidly lift up and forward below the rib cage. This should hopefully eject the obstruction.
If your poor pup isn’t breathing, hold tight around his mouth to seal it, and put your mouth on his nose to breathe air into his lungs. Do this twice and check his vitals once more.
If there is a pulse, you should never do chest compressions. But if you absolutely can’t find one, lay your dog on his side and position your hands just behind his forelegs on his chest. Firmly push down. Repeat this process. The current consensus among researchers is to perform 30 compressions followed by 2 more breaths, and repeating that cycle for 2 minutes. Remember to check vitals frequently.
We hope you’ll never need this, but if you do, we hope it helps!
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