Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Vet For Your Pet::First Aid for animals in distress

by Dr. Sunil Srivastava, B.V.Sc & A.H.
Many a times we come across stray animals in distress. They suffer due to various reasons such as accidents, fights, infections, etc. At times like these one feels like reaching out to them but sometimes you feel as helpless as the animal because professional help is not readily available. In such situations, a first aid box and knowledge on how to use it comes to the rescue.

As a first step volunteers should contact animal welfare organization or a veterinary doctor or take the animal there. In the mean time the volunteer can provide first aid to the distressed animal. On arriving the shelter or clinic the volunteer must inform the veterinary doctor about the first aid treatment given to the animal.
First aid box contents
- a small roll of cotton
- one bandage each of 2, 3 and 4 inches
- a pair of blunt small scissors
- a pair of tweezers (one blunt and one pointed)
- anti septic lotion – savlon or cetrimide, soframycin tube, burnol and lorexane
- small bottles of tincture of iodine or benzoine
- medicinal turpentine oil and oral betadine
- crystals of  potassium permangnate
- splints (ideally wooden)
- tablets of paracetamol or novalgin, perinorm or stemetil , septran, dependal-m, ciplox-tz, etosys or vitamin K, ivermectin, wysolone and phenergan or cetrizine, ampilox-250, 500mg., terramycin or oxy tetracycline 250, 500 mg, becosules or multi vitamin tablets, syrup normet or diaba-m, syrup metrogyl-f and ciplox eye/ear drops.

Muzzle the animal. Bleeding wounds should be cleaned with antiseptic lotion. In case you notice any foreign body like nail, glass, twig, etc., remove it with tweezers and apply soframycin or betadine. Use a pressure bandage in case of profuse bleeding.
Septran and novalgin tablets should be given. If bleeding is profuse etosys or vitamin-K tablet can be given. Cold packs may be applied on sprain and haematoma (accumulation of blood under the skin). Give paracetamol or novalgin tablets to relieve pain.

Maggoted wounds 
Muzzle the animal. Pour turpentine oil or apply lorexane cream. If possible plug the wound with a gauze or cotton. Unrestrained animal may run away as turpentine is irritating. In such cases lorexane cream is a better option.

Please note that crushed naphthalene balls, chloroform, liquid phenyl or diesel should never be put on a wound whether maggoted or not.

Septran or ampilox capsule, ivermectin tablet (not to be given to pups or Pomeranian dogs), novalgin or paracetamol and multivitamin tablets should be given.

A breach in the continuity of bone is called fracture. It is characterized by swelling, pain, loss of movement, deformation and a crackling sound. In the management of fracture, restriction of movement is very important. The affected part can be immobilized by tying splints with the help of bandages. Splints should not be tied very tightly.

Novalgin or paracetamol tablets should be given to relieve the animal from pain.

Muzzle the animal. In case of mild burns, the affected area should be flushed with cold water or cold saline. Ointment burnol or soframycin may be used as burn dressing. In severe burns, burnt tissues and debris should be removed and a mixture of 50ml of lime water and 50ml of linseed oil should be applied. Use soothing ointments like burnol or soframycin. 

Septran or ampilox capsule should be given in addition to pain killers. To counter shock dexona/wysolone tablets should be given to with strong tea/coffee.

In case of acid or alkali burns, acid burns should be treated with soda bicarb solution where as alkali burns should be treated with solution of vinegar or lemon juice.

Septran or ampilox capsule should be given. Paracetamol or novalgin tablet can be given to relieve the animal from pain.

Please note nothing should be given orally to an unconscious animal.

Animal should be pushed away from the live wire with the help of as bamboo or wooden material. Victim should be wrapped immediately in a blanket or a pre heated thick cloth. Muzzle the animal. Massage the heart area. Apply burnol or soframycin on burns. Use oral betadine if burns are in the mouth.

Dexona or wysolone tablets to be given with strong tea/coffee to counter shock.

Please note nothing should be given orally to an unconscious animal.

Epistaxis (bleeding from nose) 
Muzzle the animal. It is very important to give complete rest to the animal. Animal should be kept in a cool place if veterinary help is delayed. Ice packs should be applied.

Etosys or vitamin K tablet should be given. Adrenaline /epinephrine injection can be put drop by drop into the nostrils.

Perinorm tablet can be given. Give etosys or vitamin K tablets if there is blood in vomit.

Dependal-m or syrup metrogyl-f can be given. In case of foul smelling stools ciplox-tz tablets to adults and syrup normet or diaba-m may be given to puppies. In bloody diarrhoea etosys / vitamin K tablets should be given additionally. Also internal parasites/viruses may cause diarrhea/bloody diarrhoea. Vet will decide the medicine as per parasites.

Reddening of eye with or without swelling or pain, eye infection or minor injuries to eye may be treated with ciplox eye drops. For allergy due to dust, smoke or fumes, betnesol /dexona eye drops may be used. Dust particles or any other foreign body should be rinsed out with water.

Ear infection 
Swelling, pain, discharge, etc indicate towards an infection. A wound, whether maggoted or not can be a big cause of discomfort for the patient. Ear may be cleaned with betadine lotion.

Paracetamol and septran or ampilox capsule may be given to control pain and infection. Ciplox eye/ear drops to be put 4-5 times a day. If the wound is maggoted then it should be treated as per the procedures mentioned for maggoted wounds.

Wasp, bee or scorpion stings 
Stings may produce allergic reaction on the skin and a lot of pain and discomfort. Sting should be removed with the help of tweezers. Vinegar or lemon juice or soda bicarb/baking soda may be rubbed at the site. 

Phenergan /cetrizine and wysolone/dexona tablets may be given.

Snake bites 
Don’t let the animal walk. Tie a handkerchief or a bandage rolled into a string little just above the bite area. A cut in the shape of a cross can be given in the bite area and few crystals of potassiun permanganate may be put on it. This cut wound should be squeezed and if possible suction should be done with a syringe. Never try to suck the venom orally.

In this article, I have listed allopathic options for different conditions. In the following series of articles I will provide homeopathic, ayurvedic and naturopathy treatment for each condition mentioned above.

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