Now I’m a certified PetTech instructor. It feels awesome and my brain is just boiling with information. One thing I learned from this is that all the infographics on Pinterest and stuff have mostly got it wrong. They’re missing important steps and or they get some of the steps kind of off. My partner in the instructor program was a vet tech from Tucson and she’d never even seen some of this info before, and believe me she knew her stuff. This is a shout out to you, Joanna! I hope you’re crushing it in Tucson! Look: you don’t have to go to the lengths that I did. I went the long way around with the instructor training so that I could teach it. Anyone can take instructor training and the more people out there sharing this info, the better in my opinion. But it is very costly. With tuition, supplies, and travel I’m into this about 3 grand. It’s worth it, but you’ll need to make sure you have the time and resources to devote to it. Now as I said I’m certified through PetTech and I do believe they’re the best one out there, which is why I spent the money to go to Phoenix.
The second-biggest was the Red Cross but it is my understanding that they stopped the program at the end of 2015. Since PetTech is international now, they’re the largest in the world, which is pretty cool. It’s important for me to be able to provide services like this because as a pet professional I feel its part of my duty as a service provider to get it out there. People just don’t know it. They don’t know how to do it, and they don’t even realize the info is out there, in most cases. If you’re in upstate New York, contact me for training info. For those of you outside of New York you can go to pettech.net to find instructors like me to get some training for yourself, or your staff if you are a pet business owner. Also here’s something you can do right now: highly recommend that you purchase or assemble a pet first aid kit. I really recommend making your own or at least supplementing and tweaking a store-bought kit. You’ll really know it front to back that way. A pre-purchased one is convenient, but it will never be as good, I think. If you do buy one that’s pre-made, take it all apart, familiarize yourself with the components, and then supplement the parts to fill in the gaps where it falls short.
Here’s a list of the bare minimum that should be in your pet first aid kit: hydrogen peroxide. It’s only good for six months after you open it before it just turns into water, so replace open bottles regularly. Scissors – get the blunt tip kind. A rectal thermometer – digital ones are the easiest and the most accurate. Tweezers. Adhesive tape. Gauze pads. Gauze rolls. A triangular bandage. Triple antibiotic ointment. Activated charcoal and antihistamine. Benadryl of course is the recommended brand but you can just get the generic which is called diphenhydramine. The dosage is 1 to 2 milligrams per pound of body weight, and it’s best to get the liquid gel caps, pierce it with a safety pin (that you also carry in your kit) and squirt it down your pet’s throat. This will work faster than a regular pill which can take up to a half-hour to start working. For more info on what else to put in your kit and how to use everything for bleeding management, treating shock, poisoning, seizures, bites and stings, choking, burns, hyperthermia, and a whole host of other things find yourself a class and get trained.