Pet First Aid for Pet Professionals Level 3 (VTQ)

176 videos, 8 hours and 34 minutes

Course Content

Initial Assessment

Video 36 of 176
3 min 39 sec
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Pet Injury Assessment: A Comprehensive Guide

1. Introduction

When your pet is injured or unwell, performing an initial assessment of their entire body is essential to identify the source of the issue. Follow this step-by-step guide for a thorough evaluation.

2. Start at the Head

Commence your assessment at the head of your pet, beginning with the nose and mouth. Pay attention to:

  • Colour: Check for any abnormal colouration.
  • Discharge: Look for unusual discharges.
  • Pain: Observe signs of discomfort, such as scratching or rubbing.

3. Examine the Mouth

Inspect the lips, teeth, gums, and the interior of the mouth. Look for cuts, bleeding, or abnormalities. If possible, open the mouth to examine the tongue and the inside more closely.

4. Proceed to the Ears

Thoroughly examine both ears for colour, discharge, and pain. Gently palpate them to identify any issues. Be vigilant throughout the examination.

5. Move Down the Neck and Spine

Run your hands over the neck, shoulders, and the spine, checking for any signs of injury or discomfort. Continuously monitor your hands for blood or discharge.

6. Assess the Front Legs

With both hands, feel down each of the front legs, inside and outside. Pay special attention to the paws, toes, and claws. Look for injuries, bleeding, or discharge. Check the pads under the feet for foreign objects.

7. Examine the Chest and Abdomen

Conduct a thorough examination of the chest and abdomen. Ensure there are no injuries or abnormalities. Continuously check your hands during the assessment.

8. Inspect the Back Legs

If possible, ask your pet to stand up for a more comprehensive examination of the back legs. Feel over the entire length of each leg, inside and outside. Carefully examine the paws, toes, and claws. Check for signs of injury, bleeding, or discharge.

9. Test Leg Mobility

Gently move your pet's legs to different positions to assess their comfort. If your pet displays signs of pain, such as pulling the leg back or vocalizing, you may have identified the injury's location. If they tolerate movement well, it's likely their legs are comfortable.

10. Consider Your Pet's Temperament

Always remember that your pet's temperament may vary. Some pets may be more tolerant of examinations than others. Prioritize your safety when assessing any pet, especially if they are not as relaxed as Elsa, our demonstrative dog.