Need Help - First Aid for Dogs

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SYMPTOMS  THAT  REQUIRE  


EMERGENCY   VETERINARY   ATTENTION


A symptom is defined as a physical sign or physical sensation that is evidence a disease or injury may be present.

The decision is sometimes taken by a dog owner to maybe “wait and see” or maybe the veterinarian’s office hours are not conducive to an emergency, (although most vets have an emergency telephone number for the locum standing in), therefore the actual time that the dog receives medical attention could define his life or death.

It is the responsibility of a dog owner to be able identify the basic signs and symptoms of trauma or illness and to take the appropriate steps. If your  regular vet is open, telephone them and describe the symptoms before transporting your dog. However, if your regular vet is closed and you are unable to communicate with the locum vet, do not hesitate to transport your pet to the nearest emergency  animal hospital. Please familiarize yourself with their telephone numbers and geographical whereabouts so there is no confusion when there is an emergency.
The list of veterinarians and emergency hospitals in your area is found in S.A. Pet Pages.

Let us promote safe and responsible ownership for our wonderful pets!


SYMPTOMS THAT REQUIRE AN EMERGENCY VET
:

• OPEN WOUNDS,  FRACTURES,  BURNS,  HIT BY A MOTOR CAR, SERIOUS BITE WOUNDS, ANY EXCESS BLEEDING
• POISONING
• BLOATED ABDOMEN
• DISCOLOURED GUMS – SHOCK
• HIGH OR LOW BODY TEMPERATURE
• HEAVY OR LABOURED BREATHING
• SEIZURE
• UNCONSCIOUS
• SIGNS OF ACUTE PAIN
• REPEATED VOMITING
• REPEATED VOMITING AND DIARRHEA
• CATATONIC – NON RESPONSIVE
• UNEXPLAINED OR SUDDEN SWELLING


See “General Symptoms and their Cause”


GENERAL  SYMPTOMS  AND  THEIR  CAUSE


BLEEDING FROM ANY ORIFICE:

• Vulva of an unspayed female dog    -  on heat
• Vulva of an unspayed female dog    - (if not on heat) uterine infection
• Penis   -     bladder infection, general trauma to hips and abdomen, penis trauma
• Mouth -  injury, broken tooth, tongue laceration or bite wound
• Mouth - coughing blood (bubbles in blood) lung damage
transport to a vet immediately
• Stool  -  (black and tarry)   - stomach ulcer
• Stool  -  (bright red)  - bleeding from the intestines, acute diarrhea, cancer
• Nose  -  injury, foreign object, poisoning, ruptured tumour or cyst or abcess
• Nose  -  blood disorder preventing clotting, poisoning

DIFFICULTY BREATHING:

• Pain – quick, shallow breathing
• Abdominal  distension and bloat pressure on the lungs
• Trauma  -  (car accident) fractured ribs – pneumothorax (lung has been punctured by a fractured rib) –
transport to a vet immediately
• Nose – obstruction due to pus discharge, foreign object, blood clots, tumour
• Pneumonia  -  
transport to a vet immediately
• Heart failure with fluid in the lungs

DISCHARGE  FROM  EYES,  EARS  AND NOSE:

• Eye  -  clear discharge – dust or pollen in the eye, eye lash inverted
• Eye -  thick discharge  plus blood –
transport to a vet immediately
• Ear  -  dark wax, smelly, - possibly ear mites
• Ear  -  yellow / green  odorous discharge – bacterial infection
• Ear – brown discharge – yeast infection
• Nose  - purulent discharge, bacterial, fungal infection, foreign object, tumour,
• Nose  -  blood  - trauma –
transport to a vet immediately

EXCESSIVE THIRST:  - Potentially  dehydrated

• Diarrhea
• Vomiting
• ladder infection
• Kidney disease
• Diabetes
• Cushings disease – not enough adrenal gland hormone
• Uterine infection – female dogs
• Biliary fever



LISTLESSNESS,  LAMENESS  AND COLLAPSING:  

• Listlessness  - Tired – excessive exercise
• Listlessness  -  Fever above 39 degrees celsius   -
transport to a vet immediately
• Listlessness  -  Internal bleeding  -
transport to a vet immediately
• Lameness - Muscle soreness – over activity
• Lameness  -  Arthritis, joint damage, fractures
• Lameness  -  cracked or broken nail
• Lameness  -  Thorn in the paw or a cut in the paw
• Collapse  -  heatstroke  -  
transport to a vet immediately
• Collapse  -  heart failure -
transport to a vet immediately
• Collapse  -  cancer end stage -  
transport to a vet immediately
• Collapse  -  post seizure  -  
transport to a vet immediately
• Collapse  -  bloat (gastric torsion) -  
transport to a vet immediately



SCRATCHING AND BITING THE SKIN:

• Allergies
• Parasites
• Ticks and fleas
• Mites
• Bacterial and fungal infection


 
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