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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : the villager : the villager July 22, 2014


6/29/2012 1:13:00 PM
Being prepared goes a long way in animal world

I always consider myself truly fortunate to live in the Sedona Village, it is a beautiful place. There are things that may not be as convenient as they are in a major city, and by and large, these are items I can work around.

Take for example our animals. Living here we let go of the idea of having 24 hour emergency clinics at our beck and call.

Yes, we have veterinarians that respond to emergencies at off hours, however, it isn’t necessarily instantaneous.

What I thought would be useful for animal owners are a list of common remedies and ideas for preventative medicine which may help to avoid any emergency nightmares.

If you are new to the Village and you have animals, the first thing to do is find a local veterinarian.

Most veterinarians in small towns will only take their own clients on emergency, and for good reason, we need to know the patient’s normal values before we can assess a change.

Having a relationship with a veterinarian ideally is first and foremost with any move.

Have an animal remedy cabinet. There are many things to keep on hand for your pets: kaopectate (original formula), hydrogen peroxide, rubbing alcohol, super glue, antibiotic ointment, mineral oil, Benadryl (diphenhydramine only), banamine(horses), bute(horses), digital thermometer, bandaging material, ear flush, laxatone, karo syrup, broths and rice. Sounds like a strange list, but let me explain them all, I will not give dosages; your veterinarian needs to do that based on the doctor patient relationship.

The original kaolin pectin is a great product for mild cases of intestinal upset…diarrhea. Hydrogen peroxide on the other hand, may be used in certain cases to induce vomiting.

Rubbing alcohol can clean surface irritations or in mildly elevated temperatures as a mist to decrease the heat, and as a drying agent for swimmers ear. Antibiotic ointments can be used to keep minor lacerations clean until a trip to the clinic will suture the wound. Mineral oil works to protect the eyes when we’re shampooing our pet, or as a way to soften those harsh foxtails in the ear canal…again until the pet can be seen to have them removed with analgesia. Diphenhydramine (plain Benadryl) is very useful for insect stings or bites, or other allergic reactions. Super Glue has many many uses; from sealing the broken toenail on a dog, to a cracked beak on a bird, to sealing a small tear on the tip of an ear of a horse or cat, to stop the bleeding until they can be examined. Banamine and Bute are two meds that every horse person needs to have on hand; again, times to use and dosages will be determined by your equine veterinarian. Digital thermometers? Self-explanatory from the tiny cold puppy to the overheated endurance horse…information to give to your veterinarian on call. Bandaging material is always useful, from the horse with a minor laceration on the leg, to a dog with a torn pad. These applied with the antibiotic ointment…loosely!...gives us time to get to the clinic, have the equine veterinarian arrive, and keeps the wound ‘fresh’ and free of debris. Ear solution flushes for dogs, cats and horses to remove debris; while it may not cure the problem, it can relief some discomfort until the appointment time. Laxatone is good for the occasional hair obstruction in the cat, Karo syrup for the tiny puppy or kitten that is getting hypoglycemic. For those of you with diabetic pets or ferrets with insulinomas, this is a must have since diabetic regulation can be difficult. Broths, rice and yes white potatoes are staples in the pantry for any dog that has gotten an upset stomach….yes there are prescription products, however on Saturday night, these work in a pinch.

I also recommend having phone numbers for the 24 hour clinics in Phoenix, we have a list if you would like to stop by or call us. The reason for this is that they are staffed with technicians and veterinarians who work overnights. They are able to help with guiding you as to whether what you are dealing with is an actual emergency or it is something, that while alarming, may wait until the next morning. Since I have worked emergency only for several years, I know for myself, when I was in that emergency mode, it was second nature to advise clients on the phone. Yes there are limitations, AND there are many things that might be readily apparent to a trained ER veterinarian.

Don’t be surprised if you are asked to give your pets ‘vitals’; this is where the thermometer comes in handy! Checking mucous membrane color (the area above the teeth) and breathing rate are easy and valuable in determining the status of your animal.

Lastly, once your emergency kits are ready to use, I suggest one more list. It would be wonderful if you had a list of people that would be willing to take on your pets in case of emergency. Recently we had a tragedy in the Village where 2 houses burned down and the smoke permeated the air. One of the neighbors had birds that are extremely sensitive by nature to smoke. She was immediately told that she could bring the birds, and her dog to the clinic. We have done this in the past, with the La Barranca fire, and will continue to offer refuge for emergency situations. In each individual’s personal life, emergencies may arise, and having help being a phone call away may save heartache and stress for both the owners and the pets.



My hope is that this information is found useful for you and yours. If you ever have any further questions, please feel free to call Bell Rock Veterinary Clinic at 928-284-2840. We wish you all a safe summer.


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