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The pandemic has made many in-person services available online, and that includes healthcare visits for both humans and pets. Telemedicine uses digital technology to deliver health information, education, or care remotely. It streamlines care by allowing healthcare professionals to evaluate and manage their patients’ conditions without the need for an in-office visit.
Veterinarians can help pet parents this way. By consulting remotely with an online vet, pet owners have easy access to puppy advice, training tips, and answers to questions about their dog’s health at any time of the day or night. Vet telehealth can work using Zoom, via a televet app subscription, or through texting, email, or a phone call. By using a range of available online options, pet parents can avoid making unnecessary trips to the vet, saving them time, stress, and money.
Dogs are known to get into things they shouldn't, from forbidden food to fights with other animals. Accidents happen as well, and pet owners may panic if they are unprepared. Online vets can help guide pet parents through handling an injured pet by giving advice on how to treat the issue at hand, such as how to clean and bandage a wound. Since telemedicine is available around the clock it may offer a cheaper alternative to an emergency clinic for non emergent but time sensitive issues that may be handled at home with professional advice.
A dog first aid kit should be in every pet parent's home. Injuries need prompt attention, so having essential items such as tweezers and antibiotic ointment readily available makes a huge difference in these situations. Gentle, soothing words and care from his pet parent can help calm an injured dog, so combining those with telehealth advice can be the perfect solution in many situations.
Televets can help pet owners care for ill or injured dogs, but there are also times when a pet owner is unsure of the severity of a situation. That’s where teletriage care comes in - a vet can help a pet parent understand the severity of the situation and whether they need to bring their pet into the office.
Televet visits can save pet parents from paying emergency vet fees for minor injuries that can be treated at home. Online vet care can't replace in-person professional care for more serious injuries or emergency situations, but in some of these cases vets can remotely advise pet parents on how to perform immediate first aid until their pet can be brought into the office.
Telehealth support is superb for quick answers and putting your dog (and wallet) through unnecessary stress from an in-office visit. Telemedicine is the perfect answer for:
Generally, the more serious a dog’s condition is, the faster they should get in to see a vet. Signs a dog should be taken to a vet immediately include:
Pet parents and their dogs can use the services of online vets for many non-emergency situations. Virtual visits can help spare dogs the anxiety of in-office visits, answer common questions, and save pet owners plenty of money.
Some veterinarians offer these services to their patients, and there are also many platforms available online or through mobile apps that provide this type of care. While certain conditions may warrant an in-office visit, online vets can recommend ways to help a dog in distress, offer a preliminary diagnosis, and reassure pet parents.
Dogs can be very resilient, and may not always make it clear through their behavior that they have a cut or scrape that needs attention. Pet parents should keep an eye out for any changes to how their dog normally acts, and if they suspect their dog has a wound that needs attention, they should seek emergency veterinary care right away. The best method for how to treat dog cuts and scrapes varies based on the nature of the injury or injuries, and a vet will know what to do.
Pet parents should keep in mind that dogs may behave differently after sustaining an injury. Pain may make a dog feel confused, angry, or fearful. A dog that’s in pain may hide or cower and not want to be touched. Alternatively, he may show aggression. Pet parents with an injured dog should approach slowly to gauge his response, as he may bite or scratch out of fear. A pet parent who has witnessed an injury to their dog and/or is seeing changes to their dog’s behavior should call a veterinarian right away. On the phone, they should describe how the injury happened if they know, and ask what to do. Pet parents may need to wait until their dog calms down enough to be approached before taking them to the veterinarian. If a crate is available, it can be used as a safer way of transporting a dog.
To treat a dog’s wound at home, the first step is to rinse the wound to eliminate dirt, debris, and bacteria. Otherwise, an infection may develop at the wound site. Pet parents may use clean water but should avoid alcohol or hydrogen peroxide. Neosporin, a triple antibiotic ointment, may be used on minor wounds to prevent infection. If a wound needs a deeper cleaning, this should be performed by a veterinarian. If a cut or scrape continues bleeding, pet parents should use gauze or a clean rag to apply gentle pressure for five to ten minutes and contact a vet right away.
Any cut or scrape, no matter how minor, requires immediate attention. Deeper cuts need the attention of a veterinarian. Infections may develop in wounds within the first few days following the injury. Once an infection sets in, it can spread quickly through a dog's body. Pet parents shouldn’t delay in treating their dog’s wound, or his condition may worsen and require more in-depth care. Signs that a dog's injury is serious include:
Pet parents can’t predict when or how an injury may occur, but they can be prepared to treat one. Keeping a dog first aid kit can make it easier to treat future cuts or scrapes. Here are some supplies to include in a dog medicine cabinet:
You’re less than a minute away from the care and attention of our licensed vet team 24/7. Develop a proactive care plan, get emergency advice, or just tell us what’s on your mind. We’re always here.
Fuzzy’s The Pet People group on Facebook is dedicated to all things pet health and wellness. Weekly polls, Fuzzy vets and vet techs to answer questions, live QnAs and exclusive pre-release perks just for the community!
You don’t have to be an expert to be a great pet parent. You just need to know where to find them and ask your questions.