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What's in your livestock first aid kit?

 
Ann Torrence
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The large animal vet, if he can be persuaded to come at all, is a great distance away. The small animal vet is even further. We had a medical emergency with a pet cat that was traumatic for all concerned because we weren't prepared (the animal had a blood clot, extremely painful and ultimately had to be put down). Now we have even more critters. Basic things we need to be able to handle ourselves. Emergencies we need to stabilize so we can make good decisions. We need to put together a veterinary first aid kit. What are the basic supplies you keep on hand? Any good vet care references for laypeople? DH is an experimental biologist and I am not squeamish. So we can get moderately advanced here.

ETA:
Thread spin-offs
Cattle first-aid kit
 
R Scott
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What kind of animals? Where are you on the all natural/chemicals are good spectrum?

We have stuff for external wounds, same stuff as we use for ourselves. Gauze, iodine, tincture and essential oils, etc. Duct tape and SAM splints to mend broken legs on baby goats. Blood stop is important if you have a horse and barbed wire or locust trees. Cal mag co gel is one of the few "medicines" we keep, we have had cows get milk fever. We still give a tetanus and vitamin shot to any male that gets castrated. At one time we had a full IV set so we could give saline, but we got rid of those animals instead.

We had to find or balance between hyper medicated and zero intervention. You can't spend $200 to save a $100 goat, but you don't want to lose a $2000 cow because you don't have a $10 tube of calcium.
 
Jami McBride
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IV set so we could give saline
I saved a family cat with this one. So I like a way to administer fluids when necessary, but I've only needed it once so I don't think I'd recommended it.

I would add to Scott's list:

- hydrogen peroxide
- Sea salt & Kelp for home made electrolyte-drink, and saline wash
- Organic apple cider vinegar and/or lemon juice
- Organic molasses & honey
- MSM
- Epsom salts

(These are also in the family first aid kit)
 
Ann Torrence
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R Scott wrote:What kind of animals? Where are you on the all natural/chemicals are good spectrum?

For this thread, let's aim for a general list, then species specific additions.

I'm thinking a headlamp would be a good thing to throw into a barn first-aid box.
 
Cj Sloane
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This might belong in a different thread, but this video was awesome:


In America, a person that prepared for disaster for their family (much less their animals) would be considered nuts.
 
Kelly Smith
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R Scott wrote:
We had to find or balance between hyper medicated and zero intervention. You can't spend $200 to save a $100 goat, but you don't want to lose a $2000 cow because you don't have a $10 tube of calcium.


great point.

i have wondered about keeping an emergency kit on hand after reading your post in the cattle forum (about using "unnatural" remedies in an emergency).

i will start a thread like this in the cattle forum that is specific to cows (link here) - but i think most of the critter forums could use one.
 
Jami McBride
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Ann Torrence wrote:For this thread, let's aim for a general list, then species specific additions.

I'm thinking a headlamp would be a good thing to throw into a barn first-aid box.


Great one Ann. Now that I think of it when my daughter and I were working on a 3 day old piglet with a broken leg one of us was always blocking the light. I now have a headlamp for doing chores outside after dark, but it would be super for animal nursing.

Along these lines I would add a very small pair of snips. Regular scissors would have never worked for removing the tight bandages from his small leg, but I had received a gift of small, sharp, pointy snips that worked perfectly. They are sold at Home Depot for around $10 I think. Medical scissors would work fine for larger animals.
 
R Scott
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OK, the stuff that should be in a kit you just don't think of right away...

Tweezers, forceps, and needle nose pliers. From ticks to cactus and porcupine needles to small tree branches, you need to be able to get them out and one size does not fit all.

A way to shave hair. Again, not a one size fits all answer. A Wahl hair clipper and disposable razor will work for some animals but many need stronger solutions.

Staples or sutures and know how to use them. Sutures will need a CALM animal.

Feeding tube. A baby goat or lamb that was born in bad weather can be too cold to eat and run out of energy before they warm themselves up. A shot of mom's milk can give them the boost they need to get warm and stand on their own to nurse.

Bottles with nipples of many sizes, include a couple smaller than you think you need. Nipples go bad, so they need to be checked often and replaced as needed. Milk replacer or a stash of goat's milk (everything can drink goat's milk)

Molasses. Nature's Gatorade. And a drench gun to feed it to them. Basically a syringe with a metal tube to get it past the tongue so they have to swallow.

IV's are prescription only these days, so you have to really want one to jump through the hoops. I looked, I still have a milk fever IV kit but not regular saline fluid. You can Google other means of rehydration, but there aren't a lot of options if they have the runs.

Birthing kit. Gloves, towels, light, etc. In a bucket ready to go. Usually you just need to help them dry off when it is cold. Sometimes you need to help get the baby aligned to come out, get a foot straight or something. That is KNOWLEDGE, probably the biggest thing your kit needs.
 
Ann Torrence
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Then there's the special kit in the house for skunk attacks: hydrogen peroxide, soap, baking soda. Because I know my indoor/outdoor/think's he's a barn cat/but really a wimp cat will come home really late and need it NOW. It's in a box near the sink. Just add water and cat.
 
Justin Wood
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For milk cows and sheep, who sometimes got into places they were not suppose to be, I always kept around 6 foot of garden hose for foundering. It is also good to have a way to get fluids into the animal - long enough to get past the windpipe. Syringes and antibiotics. Mineral tubes.
 
Bill Bradbury
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I carry a very simple kit for myself, my guys and our critters.

1) a scalpel
2) gauze
3) disinfectant (I like the kind that comes in an ampule)
4) suture kit
5) coflex

When I was a teen, I wanted to be an EMT, until I completed training and started work, then I wanted to do any other job. I have carried this kit ever since in a small tin, it has never not been enough for emergencies.
 
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