First Aid for Pets

bandaged face cat in a bag

 

 

 

RESTRAINING A CAT

Remember a cat has five weapons, its mouth and four paws. Cats are also just as likely to injure their owner as a stranger. Its teeth are the biggest risk. The fine teeth can penetrate joints or bone. An angry cat may also use its claws to drag a hand in reach of its teeth as well as creating nasty scratches.

If you can get anywhere near a cat without it running away it usually will be co-operative enough to at least pick it up.

  1. Approach the cat slowly, talking to it then sit down beside it.

  2. Pet the cat, scratching its ears and stroking it under its chin. At this point rub around the back of the neck. Most cats will allow you to scruff them but some passionately hate it and won't allow it.

  3. Choose how you are going to pick up the cat.

HOW TO PICK UP A CAT

A. The most common method is to gently scruff the cat in your left hand to stop the cat moving its head. (For cats that don't allow you to scruff them just hold the neck to support the head.) Reach over the cat with your right hand and pick the cat under the chest.

HOW TO PICK UP A CAT

Your forearm should end up partly under the cat's body taking much of the weight. The top of the front legs of the cat can be grasped with the fingers but don't hold the leg if it is injured. Once the cat is in your arms bring it against you so it is secured between your forearm and your body. Once it is comfortable in your arms you may be able to let go of the scruff but it is a good idea to wrap your fingers lightly around the cat's neck, maybe even scratching it under its chin.

HOW TO PICK UP A CAT

B. Grasp the loose skin on the back of the neck just behind the ears and lift. The hind legs can be held in the right hand to stop the cat kicking.

C. The above technique but the right hand is put under the pelvis (between the back legs). Most of the weight is taken by the left hand. This is particularly good for breaks in the hind limbs.

HOW TO PICK UP A CAT

D. The final technique is again to scruff. However this time lay the cat's body onto your right forearm. This technique is good for breaks in any of the legs or suspected injuries to the spine.

HOW TO PICK UP AN AGGRESSIVE CAT

Throw a thick towel or blanket over the cat then scoop it up so all the paws and the head are included.

TRANSPORTING A CAT

Place the cat in a box, basket or carry bag. Pillowcases tied at the top make ideal sacks. We have seen cats brought in inside laundry baskets (the type with the lid) or even the plastic variety used for hanging out clothes. Either the owner has tied a towel over the top or more successful is two tied securely together rim to rim.

HOW TO PILL A CAT

Also cats have been brought in within sports bags. Whatever you use remember they need plenty of ventilation to breathe and to remove excess body heat.

Plastic bags are totally unsuitable. As are eskies (car fridges). This may seem stupid but we have had cats die in transport after been placed in garbage bags or airtight boxes. It is also illegal to carry any animal in the boot (trunk) of your car in Australia.


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Send mail to Administrator with comments or questions about this site                Fiona Anderson 2001