We are all aware of how important it is to know how to give CPR to a person, but have you really ever thought of what you would do if your dog was choking? How much of a tragedy would it be if you could have saved your dog’s life, if only you would have taken the time to learn how to give your dog CPR?
This month’s “how to” is designed to help give you the steps you need to save your dog’s life in the tragic event that your dog chokes. This can happen all too easily with all of the toys that are available for dogs these days. This article does not take the place of a professional training course. It is recommended that you enroll in a professional training course for more specific detailed training.
CPR for dogs under 30 pounds and puppies
Put the dog on the right side.
Locate the dog’s heart in the chest just behind the points on the front elbows. Put a cupped hand over the heart on either side of the chest. One hand should be resting between the dog’s body and the floor, while compressing one to one-and-a-half inches. Count to one, then release for one count. Do this at a rate of 100 compressions per minute.
If you have someone who can help you perform the CPR, you can give one breath using mouth to nose breathing every two to three compressions. If you are alone, you should do one breath every five compressions.
Puppies are a little different. Use your thumb on one side of the puppy’s chest, with your fingers on the other side. You will not need as much force, but you must be sure the compressions are strong enough to compress the chest.
CPR for dogs over 30 pounds
You will follow the steps above, except you should use both hands on the same side of the chest. Do NOT place your hand directly over the heart. Instead you will need to kneel on your dog’s back and place the heel of your hand at the widest part of the rib cage and put your other hand on top of it.
Keep your elbows straight and push straight down while compressing the chest two to three inches at a rate of one and a half to two times per second.
If you have someone that can assist you, you can give one nose-to-mouth breath every two to three compressions. If you are alone, give one breath every five compressions.
It is important to continue to give your dog CPR until your dog has a steady pulse and is breathing on his own.
Grab your dog’s pet bed and rush your dog to the veterinarian or nearest emergency facility. It is likely that your dog’s ribs have been fractured during CPR.
You could be faced with this tragic situation. Don’t take for granted the time you have with your dog. Take some time each day to spend quality time with your dog. Take out the pet stroller and go for a long walk. Make the most of every minute you have with your loyal furry friend.