Category Archives: Emergency

Top 10 Dog Emergencies and How to Prevent Them

 Top 10 Dog Emergencies and How to Prevent Them

Common Dog Emergencies

Veterinary emergency clinics see thousands of injured and sick dogs every year. It has been estimated that 92% of all dogs will experience some type of severe emergency situation over the course of their lifetime.

Below is list of the top 10 dog emergencies and some tips on how you might prevent them.

1. Fracture – Most fractures result from dogs being hit by a car, jumping from heights, or other types of trauma. Protect your dog by keeping him on a leash or in a fenced in yard, keeping windows closed and screens secure, and ensuring your pet is safely confined in a pet-approved car seat or seat belt. Do not let your dog loose in the back of an open bed vehicle or by a completely open window in the house or car. And finally, do not let small dogs jump from your arms, as this is a relatively common cause of a fractured leg.

2. Gastric torsion (bloat) – Bloat is a life-threatening condition caused by rotation of the stomach. The underlying cause is often unknown, however, there is an increased incidence in large breed dogs with deep-chested conformations. Occurrence is higher in the evenings and at night and may be associated with dogs that over eat or drink followed by exercise. Ways to minimize the chance of occurrence is to feed more than one meal a day, avoid allowing a pet to over eat or drink, and avoiding exercise after meals.

3. Gastric foreign body – “Foreign bodies” are objects dogs may eat which subsequently get “stuck” in their stomachs or intestines. Making sure your pet’s chew toys are safe and he is not exposed to objects he may tempted to eat can prevent foreign body ingestion. When choosing chew toys, make sure that they are durable or they don’t have parts that can pull off and be eaten. Make sure trashcans are covered, laundry is placed safely away and children’s toys are picked up. Common foreign bodies include: socks, coins, underwear, ribbon, string, cassette tapes, children’s toys, string or wrappers from meat, and just about any other object a pet can find in a vulnerable trashcan.4. Ethylene glycol (antifreeze) toxicity – Antifreeze is sweet and dogs like it. It is a deadly toxin and as little as one teaspoon can kill a small dog or cat. Prevent exposure by making sure your pet does not have access to any fluids that are commonly outside or in garages. Don’t let your pet roam. Just because you are careful does not mean that your neighbor is careful. Buy antifreeze products that do not contain ethylene glycol and are labeled as “pet” safe just to be extra careful.

5. Insecticide toxicity – Most toxicities from insecticides occur from a well-intended dog owner applying pet store purchased medication to pets. Cats and small dogs are extremely sensitive. NEVER apply a dog medication to a cat. The very safest thing to do is to check with your veterinarian to ensure a product is safe before applying.

6. Lacerations (multiple) – Most “multiple” lacerations occur from dogs hit by a car or from an animal fight. Protect your pet by ensuring that he does not run unrestricted. Keep him in a fenced in yard or on a leash. Even if he is in the yard, check on him frequently. Depending on the height of your fence, other pets might be able to get in.

7. Snail bait ingestion – Most ingestion of snail bait occurs from dogs that have access to the exposed chemical in the yard or finding an open bag in the house, garage, shed or yard. Keep all chemicals out of reach, on a shelf, in a secondary container, or in a closed cabinet.

8. Household chemical ingestion –Household chemical ingestions frequently occur from dogs chewing and playing with bottles of full products or from licking spilled chemicals. Make sure your dog does not have access to chemicals. Take special care when you have open chemicals during cleaning, so that your pet does not have access to the chemicals or your bucket of cleaning supplies.

9. Lacerations (single) – “Single” lacerations most often occur from either dogs stepping on glass, nails or other sharp objects or from getting “caught” on something in the yard. Nails, sharp areas on the fence, or trash are all possible areas of danger that can cause lacerations. Check out your yard and fence periodically for possible hazards.

10. Soft tissue trauma – Soft tissues include the skin, muscle and areas between the skin and muscle. Trauma to these tissues can occur from dogs being hit by a car, falls, fights and just about any kind of injury. Protect your pet by preventing him from dangers leading to trauma. A 6-foot non-retractable leash with a good quality collar that has a good snap may keep him close and safe.

Diana Ruth Davidson, Chief Pet Officer and Managing Nanny, Westside Dog Nanny,             Certified Professional Pet Sitter,                            Certified by American Red Cross in Pet First Aid and CPR

We offer:  Pet Sitting,  In-Home Dog Boarding, Dog Walking, Overnights in Your Home, Doggie Day Care.
310 919 9372

Top 10 Pet Emergency Kit Items


When disaster strikes, being stocked and ready to face an emergency is the best way to keep your family safe. Your pets can’t fend for themselves and are especially vulnerable if you’re forced to batten down the hatches because of bad weather. Here, ten items to include in a pet emergency kit so that your entire family can weather a natural disaster safely.


When bad weather strikes, obtaining fresh water becomes a top priority. When you go to the store to stock up on emergency supplies and reach for the bottled water, don’t forget to think of your pet. The more you can store for you and your family the better, but a week’s worth of water for each family member, including your pet, is a safe bet.


Because your pet is less likely to understand food and water rations, it is best to stock up on canned, wet food. Food in cans keeps better, and your pet will be less thirsty if they get moisture from their meal, thus enabling you to stretch out the precious water supply. Don’t forget to pack a can opener!


Like people, some pets suffer from chronic conditions that require the constant administration of medicine to keep them healthy. Speak with your veterinarian ahead of time to secure an emergency supply of pet medicines you may not have access to if your community is hit with severe weather.


You’ll want to place photographs and/or any ownership papers of your pets in a sealed, airtight container as an essential component of your pet emergency kit. If your family has to evacuate to a shelter, you may have to board your pet. Keeping proof of ownership on hand will identify you as a pet owner.


Again, if your family has to evacuate and relocate to a shelter, note that due to capacity and safety issues, you may have to board your pet. Some animal clinics and boarding facilities will offer shelter to pets, but require your animal have up-to-date vaccinations. If you need to take your pet to an emergency animal shelter, taking a copy of their vaccination record with you will help ensure they get a spot.


Because everyone in the affected community will be in survival mode, you will want to have a list of helpful neighbors and/or emergency boarding facilities handy. Knowing where you’ll need to go to ensure your pet is safely cared for ahead of time will ensure your pet is safe for the duration of the emergency.


In the event of severe weather, your pet may panic and try to break loose to find a place to hide. Many pets become fatally trapped or injured because of this. In addition, the aftermath of a natural disaster usually results in downed power lines, fallen debris and contaminated groundwater. Therefore, it is best to utilize leashes and/or carriers to restrain your pet from running out into unsafe conditions.


Whether faced with an emergency situation or not, if you do become separated from your pets the best way to be reunited with them is to have additional ID tags you can fit them with in a hurry. Consider installing a microchip in your pet to help locate them as well. Just don’t forget to keep your contact information up to date!


Together with the telephone number of the nearest emergency animal clinic, you can put together an emergency medical kit for your pets should they become injured. Include items such as gauze to bandage an injury, hydrogen peroxide to disinfect a wound, and milk of magnesia to absorb poison should accidental ingestion occur.


Your pet may be confined to a small space for an undetermined amount of time. Try to include a pet bed, extra litter, clean blankets and towels in your pet emergency kit. Like you, your pets will be nervous and frightened. Soothing them any way you can, will make your pets more likely to stay calm and relaxed until conditions improve.

Diana Ruth Davidson, Chief Pet Officer and Managing Nanny, Westside Dog Nanny

We offer pet services such as:  Pet Sitting,  In-Home Dog Boarding, Dog Walking, Overnights in your home, Doggie Day Care.
310 919 9372