Pet instructor skill review

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Classifications of an Emergency

Video 47 of 177
2 min 6 sec
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Pet First Aid: Recognizing and Responding to Injuries and Illnesses

1. Classification of Injuries and Illnesses

Different accidents or illnesses affecting pets can be grouped into three main categories based on severity.

1.1. Life-Threatening Conditions

Immediate action is required for these conditions. They include:

  • Not breathing
  • Serious bleeding
  • Spinal injury
  • Shock
  • Choking
  • Extremes of temperature
  • Snake bites
  • Unconsciousness
  • Severe burns
  • Poisoning

1.2. Conditions Requiring Prompt Attention

These conditions need treatment but are not immediately life-threatening. They include:

  • Fractures
  • Other bleeds
  • Gaping wounds
  • Conscious collapse
  • Dislocations

1.3. Minor Injuries

These injuries require veterinary treatment but are not immediately critical. Examples include:

  • Lameness
  • Minor burns
  • Abscesses
  • Bleeds that have been easily controlled
  • Insect stings

2. Initial Assessment

As a pet first aider, you must quickly assess the severity of the injury or illness and provide appropriate care. Begin by methodically examining the pet from head to tail.

2.1. Head to Tail Survey

Similar to the human head-to-toe survey, this involves:

  • Checking the nose, mouth, ears, skull, and eyes for any abnormalities or discharge.
  • Examining the limbs, ribs, spine, and abdomen for signs of pain, bruising, deformities, paralysis, and wounds.
  • Inspecting the pelvis, tail, and general body surface for fractures, deformities, discomfort, bleeding, discharge, and matting in the fur.