Manhattan Medical Center Offering Free Class In Pet CPR, First Aid And Emergency Skills

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Would you know what to do if you’re pet started choking, overheating or having a seizure?

Unfortunately, when accidents happen, many pet parents have no idea how to react, but a quick course in pet first aid can help anyone feel more prepared, reports CBS2’s Hazel Sanchez.

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“Our goal is to really empower pet owners to be prepared if their pet has some type of emergency, whether hit by a car or if they get into the chocolate in the pantry,” said Jaclyn Skidmore, director of the Usdan Institute for Animal Health Education at The Animal Medical Center.

Critical care doctors at the Manhattan center recently hosted a free course in basic first aid.

(credit: CBS2)

As many as 50 attendees learned a variety of tips, such as how to use hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting.

“It’s usually one tablespoon per 10 pounds,” said Dr. Emily Dozeman, a third year resident. “So if they ate a sock or something like that, you want to try and get it up.”

How about the best way to administer medication?

“If I’m behind him, I can have control of his head and then I can even do this with one hand,” said Dozeman, demonstrating the technique.

“You bring them out to a beach and you throw a ball, they pick up the ball and a lot of sand,” said Dr. Lisa Bazzle, a staff doctor.

That’s very salty sand which can actually result in salt poisoning.

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“Imagine just kind of eating 100 soy packets,” said Bazzle. “For a dog, that’s a lot.”

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If your pet is having a seizure, doctors say to not interfere other than making sure the animal is not going to get injured in the process.

If you think your pet is running a fever, it might be easier to put a thermometer under its armpit.

“A normal dog’s temperature is 99 to 102,” she said. “It’s pretty accurate, it’s about two degrees lower than their actual core temperature.”

Also on the class agenda was what items to always keep out of a pet’s grab: From grapes and raisins, to macadamia nuts and pennies, which if swallowed can be toxic.

“It’s the coating of the pennies, specifically pennies printed after 1982,” said Bazzle.

If your pet collapses, you should know how to perform CPR.
As of this month, the American Red Cross is now offering a similar first aid course online as well as in an app.

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The pet first aid class was so successful, the Animal Medical Center is not planning another course. Interested pet owners can find more at