Help! My Pet Isn’t Breathing! How To Administer CPR To Your Pet
CPR is a life-saving device that we generally associate with humans. However, did you know that it also possible to administer CPR to your pet? It’s true.
CPR For Animals
As a pet parent, you naturally want to know that you are doing everything possible to take care of your pet. You want to make sure they get plenty of exercise. You certainly want to keep a close eye on their diet. We also know that you want to closely monitor things like bathroom habits, social interactions, and all the other elements that go into being the best pet parent possible.
One essential to being a great pet parent involves pet first aid. There are a variety of pet first aid facts and studies that you are going to want to keep in mind, depending on what type of animal you own. You may not think pet CPR is something that you need to think about, but you couldn’t be more wrong.
Relax. Learning how to administer CPR to pets is not too complicated. The basic desired end result with CPR for pets is essentially the same as CPR for people.
How To Give Your Pet CPR
The very thought of having to give your pet CPR can strike you as a little stressful. You don’t want to imagine your pet being in such a position in the first place. Secondly, you don’t want to do something that is going to cause even more harm for your pet.
Relax! When you know what to do, you are not going to have to worry about a thing:
- Do not panic: This is the foundation of any form of CPR for any species. If something terrible should happen, the last thing in the world that you want to do is panic. It is panic that can cause you to make a mistake, which can lead to make a bad situation even worse quite quickly. No matter what happens, remain calm.
- Chest compression: Another essential component to any form of CPR is chest compression. To that end, you are going to want to learn where your pet’s heart is located. Obviously, this is something you should do before an emergency ever occurs. While the femoral artery will give you the pulse you are looking for, you really want to find the heartbeat. You can accomplish this by laying your pet down on their right side, and feeling around in the armpit area.
- Learn your ABCs: After your pet has collapsed, and after you have made the call for help, you can administer CPR while you wait for the next step. And while you administer CPR, keep in mind the ABCs of CPR. These are airway, breathing, and compression.
- Make sure you have a ride: In all likelihood, you are going to have to get to an emergency vet. Ideally, you want someone who can do this for you. What you want to focus on is administering CPR to your pet.
At this point, you are ready to administer CPR to your pet:
- Make sure your pet is on their right side, as mentioned before. This will help you to locate the heartbeat.
- Check the heartbeat of your pet, and check to see if they are still breathing. Pay attention to the strength of the heartbeat, as well as the way they are breathing.
- Make sure the head and neck have been properly aligned.
- Pull the pet’s tongue out.
- Check inside your pet for any foreign bodies. Obviously, you are looking for something that shouldn’t be there that is constricting or completely cutting off your pet’s ability to breathe.
- Close your pet’s muzzle, and administer four to five rescue breaths. You don’t want these breaths to be too deep. You simply want to make sure the chest rises and falls.
- If there is no heartbeat, you are going to have to administer compressions. Have the heel of your hand placed over the heart, with your hands locked together, and your arms straightened. Large animals should have a compression of 2-3 inches. Smaller animals will require a compression between half-and-inch-to-a-full-inch. Give your pet thirty of these compressions.
- After thirty compressions have been administered, give your pet two more rescue breaths, then begin the compression process again.
- The above process is known as a cycle. Each cycle is defined by thirty compressions and two rescue breaths. Look for the heartbeat again after four of these cycles. Independent breathing is something else you need to look for. If neither occurs, begin another cycle.
- Although you can keep going for up to 20 minutes, you really want to have your pet at the vet within that frame of time.
After You Revive Your Pet
Even if you revive your pet at home, it is still vitally important that your pet go to a vet as soon as possible.