Emergency Checklist for Pet Lovers
Pet meds, pet carrier, emergency phone numbers, medical records, and more
We all hope such emergencies never happen. It is important to be prepared, however.
Below is a list of items to keep on hand so you can act quickly in a pet emergency.
Pet emergency checklist:
- The telephone number of your pet's veterinarian
- The telephone number of the nearest 24-hour emergency veterinary hospital, if your pet's injuries are serious or your veterinarian's office is closed
- Your pet's most recent veterinary records, including vaccination history and any special dietary requirements
- A list of all medications your pet takes, and a supply of the medications
- A carrier of the proper size and shape so you can safely transport your pet to the veterinarian
- The names and phone numbers of any previous veterinarians who might have treated your pet for a special condition or have medical records
- If you do not have a car, the phone number of a family member, friend or taxi service that will take pets, to transport you and your pet to the veterinarian
- The phone number of a family member, neighbor or baby-sitter who can watch your children while you rush your pet to the hospital
- Hydrogen peroxide or ipecac -- Some organizations recommend that people with dogs keep hydrogen peroxide or ipecac on hand so you can make your dog vomit if you know he or she has eaten something poisonous. Contact your veterinarian to determine whether these substances are appropriate to have on hand and to use if necessary, and get instructions on how to use them for your pet. PetPlace.com has instructions for hydrogen peroxide posted online and says: "Inducing vomiting should be done only if instructed by your veterinarian."
Keep written information in an easy-to-find location, such as a kitchen drawer or near a commonly used telephone. Store carriers and medications nearby. It is a good idea to make an extra copy of any written documents and give them to another family member in case you lose the originals.
Faye Rapoport DesPres is a freelance writer specializing in pet care, family and outdoor activities. She lives with her husband and five cats, and has a website at OurPlaceToPaws.com.