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The first aid can be divided as professional and non-professional

A non-professional first aid is often crucial for patients in critical condition. Inadequate or poor intervention may lead to fatal consequences.
While manipulating with animals, you never forget to protect your own health first and maintain hygiene. Some animals may be aggressive or they may transmit various diseases and parasites!

Steps of a basic, short examination:

  1. Is the animal fully conscious? - is unresponsive, has minimal response, overly responsive, or has cramps,
  2. How is the animals breathing pattern? Is the breathing regular, irregular, unnatural or fast. Pay attention to extra sounds like – groaning, crackling sounds,hoarseness, difficult breathing with an open mouth/beak. We act according to the ABC system.
  3. Examination of the cardiovascular system – in the field,it is the easiest to assess the mucous membrane. The colour of mucous membrane can indicate – dry and pale colour can indicate dehydration, loss of blood, or a state of shock. Congested with blood and red mucus membrane can indicate inflammation, overheating, the first stage of septic shock - hyperdynamic shock, some kinds of poisoning. Bluish discoloration can indicate insufficient oxygen saturation, or cardiac insufficiency.
  4. Is the animal moving? On his own, does not move, he uses all his limbs, he hobbles. If you suspect, that the patient has a fracture, you have to immobilize him quickly, if there is spine damage – put the animal onto hard pad and minimalize movement.
  5. Is the animal bleeding from natural openings such as mouth, nose, or rectum or from wounds? – We assess extent of the injury, and we try to stop the bleeding. By putting pressure on the wound, or by compression of the large vessels. If you suspect internal bleeding – put pressure bandage all on limps (it will support the central circulation) and manipulate with the patient only if necessary.
  6. Examination of nutritional status: cachexia, The loss of: subcutaneous fat, and muscular volume is characteristic for long lasting or chronic illnesses, or infections.

The next step after the primary examination, is the primary therapy. Its role is to stabilize the patient, his basic life functions and to gain time needed for transport.


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