BURNS

  • BURNS may be caused by fire, heat, hot liquids, chemicals & electricity
  • 1st degree: skin is red, blisters may appear; hair may be singed
  • 2nd degree: skin is red & swollen; blisters appear; hair & skin may be singed
  • 3rd degree: skin is black or translucent; hair is lost or easily pulls away from skin
  • Examine skin eyes, mouth to determine extent of burns
  • Shock may occur: pale gums, rapid heart rate, rapid & shallow breathing
  • Apply a cold compress to 1st degree burns – DON’T use ointments, butter, etc.
  • Apply a soft, clean, non-stick dressing to 2nd, 3rd degree burns; apply soft bandage
  • For chemical burs, flush affected area with water for several minutes
  • Transport patient to veterinary hospital for immediate treatment

 

DROWNING

  • DROWNING occurs most often in swimming pools, when animals can’t get out
  • Dogs are naturally strong swimmers, but can become exhausted or confused
  • Animal may be conscious or unconscious when rescued
  • Shock may occur: pale gums, rapid heart rate, rapid & shallow breathing
  • Use pole or leash to pull animal from water; enter the water only as a last resort
  • If conscious: keep anima warm in blanket, watch for shock
  • If unconscious: keep animal upside down, squeeze chest, shake after from lungs
  • Administer artificial respiration or CPR as needed – LEARN ANIMAL CPR
  • Transport patient to veterinary hospital for immediate treatment

 

DEHYDRATION

  • DEHYDRATION occurs when some of an animal’s body fluids are lost
  • Causes include vomiting, diarrhea, heatstroke, not eating, not drinking, etc.
  • Loss of 5% or less of body weight in fluid is undetectable
  • Loss of more than 12% of body weight in fluid can be fatal
  • Eyes may appear sunken, gums may feel dry or tacky to the touch
  • Skin may remain tented or stiff when lifted up between the should blades
  • If animal is alert & not vomiting, give small amounts of water with spoon or syringe
  • Transport patient to veterinary hospital for immediate treatment

 

ELECTROCUTION

  • ELECTROCUTION  can cause burns, pneumonia and/or cardiac arrest
  • Chewing on electrical cords is a common cause of electrocution in dogs & cats
  • Other causes include contact with power lines, lightning & electric fences
  • Check for burns in or around mouth, unconsciousness, lack of heart beat, death
  • DON’T RISK YOUR LIFE! Touching the animal may conduct electric current!
  • Turn off electricity at the source if possible
  • Otherwise, use a nonmetal object to move the animal away from the source
  • Administer artificial respiration or CPR  as needed – LEARN ANIMAL CPR
  • Transport patient to veterinary hospital for immediate treatment

 

FROSTBITE

  • FROSTBITE  may occur on the feet, ears & tail after exposure to cold temperatures
  • Affected areas of skin may be pale or red, cold, shriveled and painful to the touch
  • GENTLY massage affected areas to promote blood flow (don’t rub or squeeze)
  • Flush warm water against the affected areasAs healthy skin thaw, it will reddenIf skin darkens, transport patient to veterinary hospital for immediate treatment

 

HYPERTHERMIA

  • HYPERTHERMIA (heatstroke) is a common animal emergency in  warm weather
  • Dogs & cats must pant to reduce their body temperatures
  • When air temperature rises, panting becomes ineffective & body temperature rises
  • Animals with heart/;lung disease, animals with very short muzzles are at high risk
  • Symptoms are variable, progressive and may include:
  • Initial: panting, salivation, bright red gums, rapid heart rate
  • Later: disorientation, pale gums, vomiting, diarrhea, collapse, coma, death
  • Reduce body temperature immediately with cold water (hose, bathtub, etc.)
  • Transport patient to veterinary hospital for immediate treatment
  • Prevention: never leave an animal locked in a car on a warm or  sunny day

 

HYPOTHERMIA

  • HYPOTHERMIA occurs when the whole body becomes chilled below 98F
  • If the body’s core temperature drops too low for too long, life is threatened
  • Smaller animals and those with short hair coats are at higher risk
  • Symptoms are variable, progressive and may include:
  • Initial: muscle tremors, disorientation, lethargy, slow heart rate
  • Later: convulsions, collapse, coma death
  • Wrap body in warm blankets (blankets can be warmed in a clothes dryer)
  • Place WARM water bottles against body (hot water bottle may burn skin)
  • Transport patient to veterinary hospital for immediate treatment