Happy National Pet First Aid Awareness Month

We don’t know how you celebrate National Pet First Aid Awareness Month, but at The Watering Bowl, we sent our staff to be trained in pet first aid by the American Red Cross.

To be fair, the actual month was April. But you wouldn’t know it if you were a dog staying with us for daycare. In addition to playing, socializing and general merry making, the pups spending time with us can expect to be in the best possible care.

And while we are far from being veterinarians, we do like to learn as much as we can about pet health in order to be able to identify any signs of distress or discomfort.

In fact late last year, our very own Brad Crawford spotted symptoms of bloat in Buddy, a Labradoodle who stays with us often. Buddy was hunched over with an extended stomach. After a second opinion from another staffer, Buddy was rushed to Webster Groves Animal Hospital for a follow up and, ultimately, life-saving surgery.

And that’s exactly why we insist on sending our people to be trained in pet first aid.

Here’s a photo of Jim Conger, Co-Owner of The Watering Bowl, taking the class.

Dog first aid awareness class

Never too important for dog first aid.

Jim, along with three of our store managers and our HR manager all attended this class. And, over the years, a majority of our employees have received this training. We’ve even gone so far as to learning doggy CPR. None of this is required, but we certainly think it’s important.

If you’d like to learn more about Pet First Aid, check out The Red Cross or download their app that helps you identify potential symptoms in your dog.

And if you want to see what we’ve been learning at these classes, you can sign up and take one yourself. It’s definitely worthwhile, and it can help you understand the signals your dog might be sending. It can also help you avoid any false alarms.

For example, did you know that you can tell if your dog is dehydrated if you pull up the skin between the shoulder blades, and if it doesn’t spring back into place, there’s a good chance he or she is dehydrated?

Also, a dog’s normal body temperature is 101 to 102 degrees.

And if you want to get a little more technical, you can easily examine your dog’s blood pressure by testing their capillary refill time. Simply, press the gums, and the time it takes the color to return should be approximately 1.5 seconds. Anything significantly longer could be an indication of a blood pressure issues or even shock.

Lastly, did you know there are several all-natural, over-the-counter supplements that help lower your dog’s stress level? Rescue Remedy (available at Whole Foods) is probably the best of these. It helps dogs dealing with anxiety at the vet or in the car or separation anxiety.

Well, you would if you took the class. Or read this article.

Anyway, as you were. Continue your celebration as you see fit.