We are all educated at a fairly young age that if there is an emergency you need to call 911. It’s an easy enough rule to follow for human emergencies. But we don’t necessarily talk about what to do in the case of an incident involving our pets – who many consider to be loved ones.
A few weeks ago in my neighborhood we had a tragic loss of a fairly large dog, Bentley, to accidental suffocation in a mylar bag. A mylar bag is a type of chip or snack bag. This terrible incident is unfortunately not an isolated one. Our neighborhood is now acutely aware of how dangerous these bags can be to pets.
The website, preventpetsuffocation.com, has excellent tips on how to be more vigilant as pet parents. One prevention tip is to cut up used chip bags. The last week of Novemeber 2016 was “Pet Suffocation Awareness Week,” as I’m sure will be this year as well. This week is near the holidays, which is when we all have gatherings and may not be as attentive to our pet’s environment.
Many of us gathered to help the grieving family as they figured out the next steps. The first thing you can do if you find your pet unconscious is administer Pet CPR. The American Red Cross has instructions here and they offer online courses.
The next thing that is extremely important is having all of your pet documents in an easy to locate folder in your home. EARSCT has lists for being “pet prepared” that you can download to keep in your pet’s folder. You can also ask your veterinarian for documents they recommend as well.
These documents should have your pet’s veterinarian’s number as well as local emergency clinics in the area you can contact for after hours care. We have three emergency veterinarian clinics in Fairfield County.
Cornell University Veterinary Specialists – 880 Canal Street Stamford, CT
VCA Shoreline – 895 Bridgeport Avenue Shelton, CT
VCA VREC – Norwalk – 123 West Cedar Street Norwalk, CT
Having an emergency with your pet can be extremely distressful for you and your family members as well. If you don’t feel that you are able to drive your pet or do not have someone to drive you to the nearest emergency clinic, EARSCT can provide emergency pet transportation. They also can provide other emergency services if needed throughout Connecticut.
I surely hope no one ever needs to use these services. However, I hope this also helps you to be “pet prepared” if you do find yourself with a pet emergency.