April is Pet First Aid Awareness Month – the perfect time for pet owners to take the American Red Cross Cat and Dog First Aid online course and download the Pet First Aid App so that they will know what to do in an emergency until veterinary care is available.
The interactive course includes:
- How to determine a pet’s normal vital signs so owners can notice if there are any irregularities;
- Step-by-step instructions and visual aids for what to do if a pet is choking, needs CPR, has a wound, or is having a seizure; and
- Information on preventative care, health and tips for a pet’s well-being.
People can access the course on their desktop or tablet at redcross.org/catdogfirstaid and go through the content at their own pace. It takes approximately 30 minutes to complete the course. Participants can stop and pick up where they left off if Fluffy needs a treat or it’s time to take Fido out to the dog park.
The American Red Cross has developed a free app that is proving useful to animal lovers across the country. Available through “American Red Cross” in your app store, or by going to redcross.org/apps, this app provides loads of information about pet safety in the event of evacuations and in situations where you may need to provide emergency care until veterinary assistance is available. It also offers details related to the steps you can take in advance of a potential disaster.
The Pet First Aid app has been downloaded more than 170,000 times and has earned numerous accolades since its launch three years ago. It reached the #2 spot in iPhone’s “Apps for Pet Parents” and was named as one of “8 Cool Tools for Gadget-Loving Pet People” by Good Housekeeping magazine. And – most importantly – it is free to download.
When you use the app, you will find:
- Pet safety preparedness tips
- “Step-by-step” and “how-to” videos
- An ability to toggle between cat and dog content
- An emergency animal hospital locator
- Custom profiles that can help track your pet’s health history
- A pet-friendly hotel locator, which can turn out to be very important since Red Cross shelters often cannot accommodate pets in an emergency due to human health issues