What Do You Need to Pack for Your Dog’s First Aid Kit?

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By LITTLE PUPPY PAWS | May 1, 2023
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A dog first aid kit is an essential item to have in case of emergencies or accidents with your furry friend. But what do you need to have in your dog’s first aid kit?

A dog first aid kit is an essential item to have in case of emergencies or accidents with your furry friend. It should contain items like gauze pads, antiseptic wipes, tweezers, scissors, hydrogen peroxide, saline solution, Benadryl, and medical records and contact information. Regularly checking the expiration dates of the items in your kit is important, and it’s also crucial to have a basic understanding of first aid techniques for dogs. 

What Do You Need to Pack for Your Dog’s First Aid Kit?

Essential Items in Your Dog’s First Aid Kit

Remember to seek professional veterinary care in case of serious injuries or emergencies, but having a well-stocked first aid kit can help you provide immediate care to your dog when needed.

Vaccination and Medical Records

If you have a critical emergency, you’ll want your dog’s information in one place. This will be useful if your dog is injured and requires medical attention.

If you can get your dog to the emergency vet, they can provide better, safer care if they are familiar with his medical history. You’ll also want emergency numbers on hand if you lose your phone, which usually stores your contacts.

You may be without power, internet, or phone service in a disaster. Keep a hard copy of your dog’s documentation in your emergency kit. A USB drive with your dog’s records saved is a good backup.

If you go out of town and leave your dog with a dog sitter or a friend, make sure they know where the paperwork and emergency contacts are.

Anything for Wounds and Bruises

This may be more than one item, but they are a package deal. When you need them, they all work together.

In an emergency, gauze can be used to control bleeding, as a temporary brace for suspected fractures, and even as a makeshift muzzle.

Tape can be used to keep gauze or other first-aid items in place, and scissors can be used to cut an old shirt into strips to make a more solid bandage for larger wounds or if you run out of gauze.

Any medical emergency requires the use of rubber gloves. When working with blood or bodily fluids, always wear protective gloves and, if possible, goggles or glasses.

Water and Food are Very Important

These things appear to be self-evident, but sometimes the most obvious things are the ones we overlook.

These are useful in both emergency and non-emergency situations. Long hikes, cross-country road trips, or any time you are away from home should include at least one collapsible bowl or something to provide water for your dog.

Hydration is critical for all living things. Even if you’re just out for the afternoon, give your dog plenty of water.

Keep a bottle of water on hand for your dog in case you don’t have access to your usual supply, and keep an emergency stash of food on hand in case of shortage or to help distract your dog in an emergency. You can also reward them for their bravery after allowing you to remove a thorn or tick.

Extra Accessories

If your dog becomes ill, it may consume more poop bags than you can imagine. Always keep an extra supply on hand.

Keeping an extra collar and leash on hand is always a good idea. I’ve seen dogs snap leashes in accidents, and they’re extremely useful if you come across a lost or stray animal on the highway or in the mountains and need to get them to the nearest vet or town.

Those free leashes or collars you get from the vet are great for your emergency kit or to keep in your car.

You can recycle supplies for your first-aid kit once more. You could add old dog leashes or collars that you’re about to replace to your kit without spending any more money.


Consult your veterinarian about storing an extra supply of any prescribed or useful medications in your first-aid kit.

If you lose or can’t find the medication while traveling, you’ll always have a backup supply, so you don’t have to panic or spend a day having your veterinarian call in a prescription across the country.

Keeping a few vet-approved, over-the-counter medications on hand is never a bad idea, especially when traveling. This includes anti-flea and tick medications, antacids or stomach medications, and any approved sedatives for travel.

Always double-check that these medications have yet to expire.

When Should You Take Your Dog to the Vet?

You should take your dog to the vet for routine checkups and vaccinations at least once a year. However, there are certain situations where you should take your dog to the vet immediately. These include:

  1. Signs of distress or severe pain: If your dog is exhibiting signs of distress or severe pain, such as whimpering, yelping, or excessive panting, it’s important to seek veterinary care immediately.
  2. Changes in behavior: If your dog suddenly becomes lethargic, lose interest in food or water, or shows signs of confusion or disorientation, it may be a sign of a more serious health issue.
  3. Vomiting or diarrhea: If your dog is vomiting or experiencing diarrhea for more than a day or two, or if there is blood in the vomit or stool, it’s important to seek veterinary care.
  4. Breathing difficulties: If your dog has difficulty breathing, is coughing or wheezing, or has blue gums or tongue, it’s important to seek veterinary care immediately.
  5. Injuries: If your dog has a wound or injury that is bleeding heavily, is deep or appears infected, it’s important to seek veterinary care.

It’s important to monitor your dog’s health regularly and seek professional advice if you notice any changes in behavior or signs of illness or injury. Remember that early intervention can often prevent more serious health issues from developing, so don’t hesitate to seek veterinary care if you’re concerned about your dog’s health.