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Pet First Aid Guide: How to Give Pets First Aid?

Most pets brim with energy and curiosity, making occasional injuries inevitable. In this blog post, our Franklin vets discuss pet first aid and pinpoint when emergency vet care is essential.

First Aid for Pets

Love your pets and ensure their well-being by learning how to handle a health emergency. Know how to stabilize them effectively, allowing you to take them to a vet promptly.

First aid for pets is similar to first aid for humans. Use the "Dr. ABCs"

Danger – Keep yourself and others around you safe.

Response – Check if your pet responds to their name or touch.

Airway – Is their airway clear?

Breathing – are they breathing?

Circulation – Do they have a pulse or heartbeat?

Send – Someone to ask for help!

CPR for Pets

Always prioritize checking for breathing as the primary concern. Brain damage and death can occur rapidly in the absence of breathing. The process for cats and dogs mirrors that for humans.

Immediately assess breathing and locate a heartbeat.

If they are not breathing, check the air passage is unobstructed.

If there is no heartbeat, begin chest compression at around 100 to 120 compression per minute.

Perform 30 compressions followed by rescue breaths.

Close the pet's mouth and breathe through its nose.

Check for a heartbeat or independent breathing every 2 minutes.

Get your pet to the vet, and keep CPR on route to the vet or until your pet is breathing independently.

Even if your pet begins breathing on its own, it is crucial to seek veterinary attention.

First Aid Kit for Pets

A pet first aid kit is not that different from a human first aid kit.

  • Bandages & wound dressing
  • Blunt-ended scissors
  • Tweezers
  • Self-adhesive tape
  • Vinyl gloves
  • Foil blanket
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • A blanket to use as a stretcher or to immobilize them.


Recall the acronym "Dr. ABCs" and apply CPR to pets similarly to humans, with the distinction that breaths are administered through their nose. Exercise common sense and sound judgment. If uncertain, contact your emergency animal hospital or vet clinic. 

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. Please make an appointment with your vet to accurately diagnose your pet's condition.

If your pet has sustained an injury needing veterinary assistance, contact our emergency vet clinic in Franklin to ensure prompt care for your companion.

New Patients Always Welcome

Pet Vet Battlewood is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about improving the health of Franklin's companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

Contact (615) 794-3838