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When your family dog becomes ill or injured it can be a traumatising time, as they’re very much part of the family. Animal health courses online can provide you with the knowledge you need to help you deliver first aid to your dog if the worst were to happen. Knowing what to do in an emergency can literally mean the difference between life and death for your fluffy, loyal pal.

So, with this in mind, we’re now going to go through a small selection of first aid tips for your dog, so that you’re better placed to deal with any situation that arises. Obviously, providing a safe environment and preventing illness and injury is the ideal scenario, but here’s what to do if something happens.

Tip #1 - Remain Calm

One of the first things you’ll learn on animal health courses online is that you should always try and remain calm in a pet first aid emergency. If your dog does become injured, they’re likely already stressed and the last thing they need is for you to stress them more by being upset. You should aim to use a soothing voice and direct eye contact and you’ll do much to make your pooch feel calmer.

Tip #2 - Immobilise Broken Legs

Animal care courses also teach you what you need to do should your pup get a broken leg. Dogs naturally want to run, so it’s important to immobilise the affected limb with everyday household objects like bubble wrap or even used toilet roll tubes. You’ll also need to find a makeshift stretcher to transport them safely to the vets.

Tip #3 - Keep Any Sick In the Event of Poisoning

Whilst it sounds revolting, if you suspect that your dog has ingested something that’s poisonous to their system, you should try and take a sample of any of their vomit. This won’t be necessary if you know what the cause is, but if not, a sample will help them to identify any toxin that they’ve drunk or eaten.

Tip #4 - Don’t Dress Burns

Treating animal burns is another critical part of good animal health care courses and they’ll teach you that on no account should you apply bandages, as they’re likely to become stuck to the wound. What you should do instead is cool the burn with water for a minimum of 10 minutes and then really, wrap the wound in cling film, as it will protect the burn, as well as minimizing infection.

Tip #5 - Let the Clear Their Own Airways

A big part of first aid taught in animal health courses is what to do when choking occurs. Whilst you might feel like helping them when they start choking, it’s usually best to let them clear it themselves, as they’re often very good at it and if they’re still coughing then they’re still breathing. You should only step in and provide animal CPR if your dog loses consciousness or goes limp.

Get Started in Animal Healthcare With a Course from OCA

Of course, dog and animal first aid is far more complex than what we’ve mentioned here, but you can learn lots more by taking affordable, flexible animal healthcare courses online with OCA. Our Certificate in Pet Care is just one of the many short courses available that can be used to either get into animal care as a professional or better look after your own pets.

If you would like to know more about this or any of the courses we offer, all you need to do is visit us online at There you’ll find everything you need to know, but if you want to talk to us directly, give us a call on 1300 611 404 and we’ll do everything we can to help.


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