I will start by saying you can make this as detailed as a human first aid kit and beyond. It can be a little overwhelming at first but here is a basic list of things to have in the kit, then after that you can tailor it to fit the needs of your family!
-Also depending on what animal or animals you have you would want to get certain medicine or instruments that got their needs. I.E. Cat nail clippers are to small for dogs and are shaped a little different. And Reptile supplies would be completely different than supplies for hamsters.
-Fish are another example, which have a large array of antibiotics you can buy OTC and can be used by humans. It is a cheaper way to stock all First Aid Kits with these and then learn the dosages for both humans and your specific pets.
1. First Aid Bag – You want this to be a good size to hold everything you have now and what you add going forward. One thing to keep in mind too is don’t make it so huge you can’t carry it easily. If you need that many supplies or have more than 1 type of pet you can make a central kit and then a smaller supplemental ones to go along with it. I have a central one for all 3 animals, then a small additional one for cats medicine and specific supplies.
2. Scissors – for cutting matted fur, tape for the bandages and getting loose from small cord or fabric trapping them.
3. Tweezers – to get rid of splinters, ticks, small things inbetween the paws, or debris from the wounds.
4. Vet Wrap – this is the bandage with gauze underneath you see when your pet gets home from the vet with a cut or abrasion. It clings to itself so you can dress the wound with Gauze and then rap this on top. Be very careful not to wrap to tight!
This by far to me is the best to use, much better than band-aid type bandages. It gives you both flexibility and strength at the same time! It comes in 2” Rolls and 4” Rolls. The best place to find it is http://www.Amazon.com . just search for pet first aid supplies.
5. Antibiotic Ointment – I highly recommend you get this from a pet supply store and DO NOT use the human brand. The problem is the animals will lick off the ointment even sometimes if it’s under a bandage! It costs about the same to get the pet kind but it’s not toxic to them. In a pinch you could use the human kind if the wound wasn’t in an area that could be licked, or if you have a dog cone that will prevent it.
6. Dog/Cat Aspirin – you might be able to find this at a Vet supply store or you could get it from the vet at your next checkup. This can be very helpful to animals but be sure to mind the dosages and times in between.
If your dog is in serious pain or you might be just fixing them up to get them to the vet, give them one dose then discontinue based on what the Veterinarian tells you. But be sure to tell them you gave it to your animal.
7. Gauze Pads/Rolls – Regular human kinds and brands are completely ok for this. You should get various sizes and a few rolls that you can wrap around your pet. A lot of times when you are first cleaning a wound before bandaging you can go through a good amount of gauze. For that reason you should have a bunch in all the first aid kits in your house.
In addition to bandaging wounds you can couple Gauze with the Vet Wrap and a split (ready made material or improvised) and splint a leg if nessecary.
8. Latex Gloves – for you to use while you are working on your animal. This is another item that would be in your normal First Aid Kit so another good time to double up on the preps.
9. Thermometer – you can buy an ear thermometer for most bigger pets and I recommend these. They do use battery’s but only 2-4 AA at most. Very Important: make sure to go online and get a Temp chart for the animal you have. Some dogs can differ from each other by breed & Size.
10. Benadryl – OTC or human kind is fine, just remember to either ask your vet how much to give, I have always given my animals a child size, both dogs we have are under 20lbs, and this worked fine.
11. Hot Packs & Jell Ice packs – you can use the ice ones you keep in your freezer for a regular First Aid Kit for a burn on the animal or of they are overheated. The hot packs you can use if your pet shows signs or hypothermia or you know they are very cold. Also snuggling them works well also and makes them more comfortable. With the hot packs also wrap them in a light cloth or paper bag, I find they can sometimes get too hot and the animal will try to scoot away possibly injuring itself more.
12. Petroleum Jelly – you can use a water based kind to be safe but for use in wounds when out if antibiotic cream I have personally used it to seal a wound under the bandage and it works fine. Another use would be for the thermometer if you have to use it rectally.
13. Muzzle – your pet is going to be scared when they are hurt so keep in mind it’s good to put a muzzle on them before you start treating. Even the most loyal and passive dog may bite if you touch an open cut and snap at you. It’s nothing personal and they are acting from an internal primal place.
I have personally seen cars both bite and scratch someone who is rinsing out a wound particularly. We all know cats don’t like water and that applies to creams as well.
14. A Pill Shooter Syringe – the first use this had is for the Asprin or any medicine in pill form you can’t trick them into eating. It uses water pressure to shoot the pills into their throat and hydrating them so they won’t choke at the sane time. Wound cleaning is another good use for this. You can use water or betadine or something that doesn’t sting. This will help you a lot while cleaning as well as saving the Gauze you have for later or if you are low/out.
15. A Clotting Agent – this is used mostly on big wounds to stop the bleeding. If you have to use this I would recommend getting your animal to the vet ASAP!
When you cut an animals nail to close it can bleed and actually cause them to bleed out or get a bad infection. You can use something like Quick Clot on the nail! There are also other brands you can buy that work specifically for pets but if you happen to have this in either the main human First aid Kit or both kits, it will come in handy.
16. Liquid Bandage – works the same way the human kind does, but get the pet kind just to be sure it is safe for them to lick. I recommend it mostly for minor cuts or areas you don’t want exposed but are not serious enough for the gauze and bandage route.
17. First Aid Book On Pets – This will give you a lot of information on how to handle each situation as it occurs. From as simple as making a splint to changing bandages over a lengthy time period a good one will get you through.
If possible I would try and get a spiral bound one or make one from print offs from the internet.
Take a class on basic first aid with animals. You could Probably find a list online or ask a local pet store. Having a great kit is awesome, but the more you know how to use it, the more valuable you both are. Everyone into preparedness of any type or that has a family should take a basic level human first aid class.
18. Pet Snake Bite Kit – Hard to find, once again I recommend http://www.Amazon.com to find it, but well worth it if you hike a lot or know you have snakes around.