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Livining up the conversation - Topic II - Pet First Aid Kits

The most recent disaster of Tornado Alley in the Heartland - in and around Moore, Oklahoma - didn't affect me or family, personally, but oh so close to home it happened, and I so worried about unknown neighbors to the south and their well being.

I was born in Austin, Texas, but moved with my parents to their state of birth (Kansas) in the midst of Tornado Alley at a very young age. Trips to the basement (or cellar - there is a difference) were not an uncommon experience during my growing up and subsequent adult years during tornado seasons . . . but we didn't fret much as us kids (and later, as we became adults) . . . as we just grabbed the necessary supplies we were told to grab and searched out safety, A.S.A.P.

My Mom got a bit frantic a time or two or three as she cursed my Dad for heading out as a storm spotter, (Ha! Ha! What can anyone complain about a worried mother?) Yet, my brother and I grew up knowing we just needed to adapt to Mother Nature's influences. My sister, round about a decade or so younger than my brother and I, also adapted to hurricane survival as she moved with our parents to the gulf coast of Texas as a very young girl and grew into adulthood years ago.

I still get tickled that she's more afraid of a quick tornado outbreak as I can't even imagine hours and hours of destructive hurricane activity that she has endured over the years while living only miles from the Gulf Coast. And my brother currently lives in a very northern state of the U.S. and must deal with blizzard conditions for many, many months of any given year. (In Kansas, most things get back to normal only a few hours or so after a weather event so I remain awed at their family preps!)

Bottom line . . . we all learned early on how to deal with area weather threats and how to act accordingly . . . and after all these years we each seem to be able to cope with local threats on a reasonable basis. Not saying at all that any of us are protected from natural disasters . . . just saying that a bit of planning always helps! And . . . that we each happen to be adequately able to cope with the situation that our separate areas require, most times, speaks volumes.

I wish the same peace of mind for each of you and your skin and / or fur families.

Since this is a Mastiff site - and not a dedicated skin only, site - I'll only promote pet first aid care kits and assume you each have other options to care for the skins during a natural disaster.

Pack a pet care, back pack, friends, and keep it as accessible as possible.

I keep ours on a hook in the pantry. It's not always up-to-date as I don't use it for relatively normal circumstances - - - but it's there if I need to grab it for an emergency situation - - - even as I might need to pile in extra, more recently prescribed meds, or other things as needed.

Beside general first aid stuff for the big dogs, what do you believe is necessary for a pet first aid kit?

My personal best answer is a large tarp! (It's a painter's tarp that is strong enough to allow the transport of a Mastiff if absolutely necessary.) Gads I hope we never need it, but if we do . . . it's available in my pet first aid kit / backpack!

Other suggestions or forward thinking thoughts concerning your pet care kits?

Just throwing out some food for thought and looking forward to your comments. Chime in with original thoughts and concerns. I look forward to hearing your comments so that we can supplement our pet first aid kit if necessary. Thanks so much, friends.

Take care all . . . Kansas Cindy and the Sunflower Band!

Re: Livining up the conversation - Topic II - Pet First Aid Kits

No doubt the site being down for a while cost this thread to lose any kind of initial momentum. I do believe having some sort of first aid preparedness kit is an important concept. Just so happens that in my case, Wrigley and I are less than 10 min from the vets and if there's anything going on with him, we hop in the car pronto. We don't really have to worry about critter bites around here.

My single biggest fear is probably transporting him which is where your idea of a blanket is an excellent one. One thing that is on my to-do list is to find an easier way for him to get in and out of the Tahoe, which is ~24" off the ground. Getting in isn't nearly as difficult as getting out. That first step/jump down puts stress on those aging front limbs.

Re: Livining up the conversation - Topic II - Pet First Aid Kits

Thanks for your comments, Bill. We don't live more than 10 - 15 minutes from a vet med (24/7 emergency care) hospital either, but as long as there are no 911 type ambulance services for our four legged kids, health care transport of these creatures remains a critical area of concern for all of us, doesn't it?

Several years back, the Hubster and I needed to transport 220 pound Kosmo once as he suffered through a cluster seizure event. Our efforts to do so began at about 4:00 or 5:00 a.m. Luckily, we managed to get him positioned on a blanket, out of the house, and drove the Jeep as close to the back gate as possible. Little ole me was capable of helping DH "drag" our babe to the back gate as he was still seizing on the blanket but I was totally useless in helping "lift" our boy into the vehicle. We went "a knocking" on our neighbors' door (young, strong, college aged men) to ask for help in lifting our boy into the back of our Cherokee Jeep from a sling like tarp structure (Kosmo couldn't even stand) so that we could transport him to vet med.

(Another good reason to be good to neighbors - it's reasonable to hope they will respond kindly, in turn, when necessary! These young men - who have since moved on, were once upon a time good neighbors. They stay heroes in my eyes, as we woke them up from a dead sleep before sunrise by knocking on their door and asking for that needed "lift" in our time of need. They graciously responded, helped DH lift the dog into the Jeep, and we remain eternally thankful for their assistance during that horribly frightful, predawn event.)

After that and once dear husband reached the vet med hospital, a flurry of staff came out and lifted Kosie-Mo out of the Jeep and onto a gurney, almost pushing my husband aside. (The blanket Kos was lying on made this much easier and much quicker for the staff, but darned if they weren't ready to treat him in the back of our Jeep if necessary! Kudos to Kansas State Vet Med Teaching Hospital students and staff!)

This particular scenario is exactly why I decided it was important to include a tarp in my emergency first aid pet care bag / backpack. (Kosmo did survive this incident and the neighboring college guys all came over the next week, to welcome him home!) Crap happens and when the big furs can't even stand up on their own, and hindsight reminds me it just seems practical to have another option in one's hip pocket (or backpack, in our case ) ready to go, I think it's beyond "good" for us Mastiff pet parents to think outside of the box and act accordingly.

As far as routine transports go when the furs may be slightly injured or merely reluctant, but remain fully cognitive - especially as they grow, the joints age and they become more sensitive - there are a few "ramp" options available through pet supply (online or brick & mortar stores) retailer options that are designed to work with SUV's. The options are not cheap, but they do exist.

As well, (and this is something I've been bugging my husband to use all those expensive power tools he keeps purchasing for creative endeavors on a sensible project - ha-ha ?!?!) a cheaper, homemade ramp made of wood, that can fit in the back of an SUV which can be constructed and used as a walk up or walk down option for the big boys & girls makes perfect sense! This, to me, seems a completely acceptable (even if not attractive and far from perfect) alternative to the jumping up or down concerns we all have for our big fur, growing and aging, four legged big kids!

Just some food for thought, Mastiff parent friends. As always, comments welcomed!

You and Wrigley take care, Bill! Okay? And thanks again for your input on this site! -Cindy-