Spring is here and so is the time to get outside and enjoy our beautiful weather! When you go out and enjoy the outdoors with your pet or companions, it is important to carry first aid items in the event of an emergency. Each outing may require different materials so pack accordingly. Although you probably already bring a human first aid kit with you and many of the same materials are compatible, here is our list of recommendations for your dog. Please feel free to modify as needed!

**Remember these are for quick fixes to help your pet until you have access to veterinary care**


  1.  Benadryl (diphenhydramine) 25mg tablet

             Dose: 1 to 2mg for every 1 pound of dog’s weight

Use: This is an antihistamine and is great for mild swelling caused by allergic reaction (spider bites, mosquito bites, grass and/or pollen)

WARNING: This drug can cause sedation and in rare causes can cause excitation


        2.  Triple antibiotic ointment


             Dose: Apply a small amount to the wound up to three times daily.  Needs to have about 10

             minutes to absorb – try not to let your pet lick this off.

             Use: topical antibiotic ointment for minor external wounds

            WARNING: do not use in eyes or mouth.


        3.    1% Hydrocortisone cream (Steroid cream)


              Dose: Apply a thin layer over affected area (bug bite wounds, reaction to grass/pollen) up to

three times a day (every 8 hours).  Okay to use with Benadryl oral tablets also. 

Use: Temporary relief of itching.

WARNING: Do not use in eyes or mouth.  Do not apply directly onto wounds as this cream can interfere with healing.


        4.    3% Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)


Dose: 1ml per pound or 1 tsp per 5 pounds or 1 Tbsp per 15 pounds.

Use: To induce vomiting within 2 to 4 hours of ingestion of something poisonous, toxic, or a foreign body (such as rocks, socks).  Once signs of intoxication are present, inducing vomiting is of little to no use. A maximum of two doses can be used to induce vomiting. If the first dose does not work within 10 to 15 minutes, a second dose (of the same volume) can be administered.  If two doses have been given, and the substance has not been vomited or vomiting has not occurred, DO NOT GIVE additional doses. 

WARNING: Inducing vomiting may lead to aspiration pneumonia. Do not induce vomiting if the dog is lethargic, mentally altered or comatose. Do not use if dog ingested corrosive substances, sharp or large objects.  Do NOT use in cats.

NOTE: Vomiting does not completely empty the stomach. If a high enough dose was ingested even after inducing vomiting, toxicity is still possible.


To learn more about what is toxic to your dog and cat, check out petpoisonhelpline.com.  If your pet ingested something toxic, call the Pet Poison Helpline at 855-764-7661 (a $49 charge does apply to speak with a veterinary toxicologist) OR 907-376-7930 to speak with us if we are available. 


        5.  Any medications that your pet is on


Even if your pet is not due for medications while you are out hiking, be sure to take a small quantity with you just in case something should happen and you won’t make it back home in time for the next dose. 


               If you are traveling remotely, be sure to have extra with you just in case you can’t make it back in time for                refills. 



  1. Glucose paste/karo/corn syrup

            Use: for patients that are weak or lethargic and possibly hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) (very important to carry             for diabetic patients).  Apply a small amount to the gums of your pet if concerned – there is no harm with this.              WARNING: Ideally, do not use your fingers (as you will absorb some of the sugar) and apply with a syringe,                      spoon, other object to the gums. 


        2.  Dilute Betadine (including gauze soaked in dilute betadine in sealable bag such as a Ziploc)


            Use: disinfect superficial wounds    

            Diluting instructions: 1 part Betadine to 10 parts sterile saline for disinfection. 1 part betadine to 100 parts             sterile saline for flushing.

            NOTE: In the field, fresh water is an OK substitute for saline.

            WARNING: Do not use in or around eyes or in the mouth. 


        3.  Styptic powder/pencil


            Use:  This is used to stop tiny bleeds such as with a broken toenail or small ear wound.  Will not stop large             bleeds and may burn when applied.


        4.  Fresh water


            Use: maintaining hydration for your pet and cleaning debris out of wounds


        5.  Bandage material (self-cling bandage, sterile nonstick gauze, adhesive tape, and bandage scissors) 


            Use: to apply pressure and to help wounds keep clean

            WARNING: always monitor the bandaged area for swelling around the bandaging. Applying a bandage too             tightly can cause pressure necrosis (death of tissue).  If swelling is noted from the bandage, loosen the             bandage, remove or replace bandage lightly.

            Note: Oozing bandages should be changed as frequently as every few hours or when strike through (blood             or discharge) is seen on the outside of the bandage. Bandages covering small wounds can be changed             every 24 hours.  If the bandage is on the foot, leave a small opening for the toes and monitor the toes s for             swelling and coldness.  If the toes are swollen or cold, the bandage is too tight and should be removed.

            Also be sure to keep the bandage clean and dry.  Wet bandages promote infection and dirt. 

            Take a Ziploc bag with you in your first aid kit and use this to place over the bandage if needed to place this             on the paws. 



        6.  Clean blanket and towels


            Use: to help clean wounds, dry your pet off, keep your pet warm, and lay supplies on. 


        7.  Saline eye flush


             Use: flush debris (pollen, dirt, other) from eyes or small wounds


        8.  Forceps, tweezers, comb, nail clippers


Use: grooming and removal of debris (twigs, splinters, thorns, etc) from coat, skin and/or wounds.