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pet 911: what to pack in your pet first aid kit

  • Jules
  • Posted by Jules Benson on
    Chief Veterinary Medical Officer of Petplan

Emergencies can happen at any time. Lucky for your pets, you’re ready for anything. As their personal "Pet First-Aider" you make it your responsibility to keep a handy pet first aid kit well-stocked and ready to go. 

At Petplan pet insurance we recommend a simple, easy-to-carry kit, complete with the most useful items for most pet emergencies.

Your basic pet first aid kit should include:       

  • Extra leash
  • Ice pack
  • Gauze 
  • Non-stick bandages (the kind made just for pets)
  • Towels, or strips of clean cloth
  • Adhesive tape
  • Milk of magnesia 
  • Activated charcoal
  • Hydrogen peroxide 
  • Digital thermometer
  • Medicine dropper
  • Blunt-end scissors (to cut the tape and gauze)
  • Tweezers
  • Rectal thermometer 
  • Disposable gloves (non-latex)


You can even find ready-made kits at pet stores. Just make sure to personalize yours with your pets’ vaccination and medical history, and contact numbers for her vet and emergency after-hours vet clinic. This handy poison reference guide can hold both your contacts and the numbers to call should an accidental poisoning occur. When you take the time to prepare in advance, you’ll be ready for the pet accidents and injuries you never saw coming. 

Another useful resource? The American Red Cross. Many local Red Cross chapters offer pet first aid classes. Just type in your zip code on www.redcross.org to find class listings for your local chapter. You can also download their mobile pet first aid app for your smartphone.

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Posted by Judy Shank
on April 18 2016 12:08

Excellent info! Thanks so much.

Posted by Carol Flink
on March 25 2016 11:53

this info is very helpful! thanks for posting. And how about a refresher on animal CPR!

Posted by Mandy Barre
on March 24 2016 13:37

what is milk of mag for and where do you get activated charcoal?

Posted by kassie smith
on December 01 2013 20:52

any prepacked first aid kits you might recommend for a healthy animal and one who suffers from pancreatitis?

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