10 Ways to Take Care of Your Injured Pet at Home

Your beloved pet has been injured, and your first instinct is to take him or her to the vet as soon as possible. While this may be your pet’s best chance at recovering from the injury, there are things you can do at home to help make their time of healing more comfortable and less stressful. Here are 10 ways to take care of your injured pet at home until you can bring them in to see the veterinarian.

1) Assess the Situation

-Put the pet in a warm, dark, and quiet place so it can recover. -Carefully inspect the wounds to check for any foreign objects. If you find anything, remove it with tweezers or pliers as quickly as possible. Clean the wound with mild soap and water and allow it to dry. Apply an antibiotic ointment if needed (such as Neosporin).

2) Isolate The Wound

The first thing you should do is isolate the wound. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water before touching the wound or cleaning it. Next, you’ll want to carefully and gently soak up any excess blood from the wound area with a cloth or paper towel. After that, disinfect the area by spraying it with hydrogen peroxide or alcohol (depending on how deep the cut is) for five seconds. Gently pat dry before applying topical medication like an antibiotic ointment or cortisone cream if necessary.

3) Keep Your Animal Comfortable

Make sure your pet has water to drink and keep the container in an area that is easy for them to access. If you’re using a bowl, make sure it’s not slippery so they don’t have any difficulty reaching their paw into the dish.

4) Consider a Veterinarian Visit

If your pet has suffered an injury and does not seem to be improving, it may be time for a visit with your veterinarian. It’s always a good idea to have a backup plan in place just in case you can’t find relief at home. Plus, the sooner you seek medical attention, the better the chance that your injured pet will recover.

5) Use Anti-Inflammatory Medications

If your pet is experiencing pain or has a ruptured muscle, your veterinarian may prescribe an anti-inflammatory medication like Rimadyl, Deramaxx, or Metacam. These medications are also known as non-steroidal antihistamines. They help with the swelling and pain that comes from injuries, so it can make things more comfortable for your pet.

6) Rest The Injury

Animals are much smaller than humans, which means that cuts and abrasions tend to be proportionately larger. You will need to clean your pet’s wound with a gentle disinfectant as soon as possible; this is especially important if the animal was injured outside. Clean the wound gently with soap and water, and then apply an antibacterial ointment or petroleum jelly. Make sure you cover the wound with a clean, dry bandage after you finish cleaning it off.

7) Keep the Wound Clean and Bandaged/Splinted

If your pet has been injured, the first thing you should do is clean and bandage the wound. If there are objects protruding from the wound, don’t remove them-just apply pressure with a clean cloth until you can get veterinary care. Wrap any areas that need to be immobilized in gauze or a soft cotton wrap so your pet can’t put too much weight on it.

8) Look for Signs of Infection

When an animal is injured, you can’t always tell if the wound has become infected. As the owner, it’s important to monitor for signs of infection like redness, swelling, pus, or discharge that can be either moist or watery. Seek veterinary care if any infection signs are present.

9) Administer Pain Medication As Needed

Administer pain medication as needed with a syringe.
-The best time to administer pain medication is 10-15 minutes before the animal experiences an anticipated painful event (e.g., surgery). Administering too early may cause sedation, while administering too late may mean inadequate pain relief.
-For long-acting medications, wait 20 minutes after giving the first dose before deciding whether or not a second dose is needed.

10) Notify Your Vet If There Are No Improvements in 48 Hours

If you don’t notice any improvements within 48 hours, it’s important to contact your vet and let them know so they can diagnose the problem and decide what the next step should be. Keep in mind that your pet might need special medication or an operation that is only available at a veterinary hospital.

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