Items to Include in Preparation for a Cat Emergency
One of the most frustrating things about an emergency is that no one knows when they are likely to strike and, in many cases,, when an emergency does arise, it is at the most inopportune time. Unless you are someone who is naturally very calm under pressure, it is very easy to become anxious and panicked when an emergency occurs. However, this can cause you to make errors of judgement, and this is something that could have serious consequences for everyone involved. When that emergency involves your cat, your feline furbaby could be adversely affected. Nevertheless, by being prepared and having the right resources available, you can stay calmer and get your precious feline the help she needs when she needs it most.
What can be classed as a cat emergency?
Deciding whether or not something constitutes an emergency is a conundrum that many owners struggle with. They don’t want to take their cat to the vet’s and use up an emergency appointment that another animal could benefit from if it isn’t actually necessary. However, they don’t want to put their cat at risk if she really does need immediate professional care. To help you determine whether or not your kitty needs your vet’s attention ASAP, here are some common cat emergencies:
- Abnormal urination (in male cats)
- Difficulty breathing
- Fighting with other cats
- Hit by a car (injuries may be internal and not obvious)
- Major trauma (large wound or blood loss)
- Not moving/hiding/profound lethargy
- Obvious signs of distress or pain
- Protracted vomiting/diarrhea
- Stopping eating and/or drinking
- Sudden paralysis of the hind end
- Suspected or known ingestion of poisonous substances
Preparing an emergency kit for your cat
Every responsible pet owner should have a first aid kit with all of the equipment needed to deal administer immediate basic assistance to their cat. In some instances, it is this urgent response that can save an animal’s life.
Items that you should include in your cat’s first aid kit are not dissimilar to what you would find in a human version. This makes it easy to keep your kitty’s pack well stocked. Some of the items her kit should have include:
- Absorbent gauze pads
- Adhesive tape
- Antiseptic wipes and spray
- Blunt-end scissors
- Cotton balls/pads
- Foil emergency blanket which will help keep your pet warm
- Gauze rolls
- Hydrogen peroxide. This will stimulate vomiting should your pet suffer with poisoning, but must only be used with permission from your vet.
- Ice packs
- Non-latex disposable gloves
- Pet carrier
- Petroleum jelly. This is used to lubricate the next item on the list.
- Rectal thermometer. The average mammal should have a body temperature between 100°F and 103°F.
- Saline solution
Preparing her paperwork
In an ideal world, you will be able to take your cat to your usual vet if an emergency arises. However, it pays to be prepared with copies of her medical records, including information about any medications she is currently taking, just in case your usual vet isn’t available. The more information you can provider the professional looking after her, the easier it will be to ensure that she gets the appropriate care.
It is also helpful to have a copy of your vet’s contact details, including the number for the out of hours service, with your cat’s first aid kit.
Not all emergencies are sickness or injury. While rare, natural disasters do occur, and you will want to do your best to keep your cat safe as well as the humans in your family. If you live in an area where tornados, hurricanes, flooding and earthquake are known to happen, it is extremely beneficial to prepare an emergency kit for your cat should a disaster scenario arises. This should contain:
- Your cat’s first aid kit
- Enough food and water for your kitty for at least a week
- Bowls and dishes
- Litter box and litter
- Medications and medical records
- Cat carrier and blankets
- Picture of your pet should you become separated
If you would like further advice and support on how to prepare for an emergency situation concerning your cat, please contact our veterinary team who will be happy to help.