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Five Things: Filling Your First Aid Kit

These items will help keep your family and pets safe.

Whether your summer agenda includes a vacation, staycation or a little of both, plans should include a first aid kit. Upper St. Clair Patch has you covered with tips from the American Red Cross and the American Veterinary Medical Association to keep your family and pets safe.  

These are items the Red Cross recommends every family of four should have in its first aid kit:  

1. Bandages: 25 adhesive bandages (assorted sizes), one roller bandage (3 inches wide), one roller bandage (4 inches wide), two triangular bandages

2. Cloths and gauztwoe: absorbent compress dressings (5 x 9 inches), one adhesive cloth tape (10 yards x 1 inch), five sterile gauze pads (3 x 3 inches), five sterile gauze pads (4 x 4 inches)

3. Cleansers and ointments: five antibiotic ointment packets (approximately 1 gram), five antiseptic wipe packets, two hydrocortisone ointment packets (approximately 1 gram each)

4. Tools: Two pair of large, non-latex gloves, scissors, tweezers, first-aid instruction booklet, one breathing barrier (with one-way valve), oral thermometer (non-mercury/non-glass)

5. Other items: Two packets of aspirin (81 mg each), one blanket (space blanket), one instant cold compress

The agency also suggests including any prescribed medications and emergency phone numbers in the kits, which should be checked regularly for expired items.

For the pets in your life, the American Veterinary Medical Association advises having the following items in a first aid kit:  

1. Numbers and records:

The AMVA recommends having phone numbers for your pet’s veterinarian, emergency veterinary clinic and Animal Poison Control Center, which is 888-426-4435. Your pet’s medical records, including medications and vaccination history, should also be on hand.  

2. Bandages and cloths:

Gauze, bandages, adhesive tape, towels and clean cloths can all be helpful in situations when wound care is needed.  

3. Magnesium and peroxide:

Milk of magnesia and hydrogen peroxide can be used to absorb poison and induce vomiting, respectively. However, the AMVA urges owners to always seek professional advice before administering these items.  

4. Digital thermometer:

Pet temperatures must always be taken rectally, not orally.  

5. Eye dropper:

An eye dropper, or large syringe without a needle, may be used to give oral treatments or to flush wounds.  

The AMVA provides a list of tips for providing first aid to animals here.

Kathy Gillen June 13, 2011 at 03:38 PM
I would also add the band-aids specific for blisters! Those have saved me.

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