How to Make a Cat First Aid Kit

Child listening to cat's heart with a stethoscope

If you're a cat owner, preparing for an emergency should also include making a cat first aid kit. Find out what you should include so you'll be ready for any injury or illness your cat may experience.

What to Put in a Cat First Aid Kit

If you own a feline, consider assembling a cat first aid kit in a waterproof kit with the following items:

  • Adhesive first aid tape (in narrow and wide widths)
  • Pet's medications
  • Scissors
  • Cotton Balls
  • Sterile gauze pads and squares (3x3)
  • Rolled gauze (for bandaging, stabilizing joints)
  • Hydrogen peroxide 3% USP (to induce vomiting and to use on infected wounds; check the expiration date from time to time and keep only fresh solution in your kit)
  • Bandana or nylon stocking (can be used for muzzling or securing a torn earflap)
  • Strips of cotton to stop bleeding
  • Tweezers (flat slant tip instead of the rounded variety)
  • Antibiotic gel
  • Ice packs
  • Rectal thermometer
  • Water
  • Sheet or big towels (at least 2)
  • Sterile needle (to remove splinters and ticks)
  • Turkey baster or bulb syringe (for flushing wounds, administering medications)
  • Eyedropper
  • Rubber gloves
  • Nail clippers
  • Comb
  • Disposable safety razor (for shaving fur from around a wound)
  • Paper towels
  • Blanket (a compact thermal blanket works well; uses include keeping an injured animal from going into shock)
  • Strips of cloth
  • Flashlight
  • Matches
  • Cotton rolled
  • Cotton balls
  • Bandages (including self-clinging or vet wrap and waterproof types)
  • Anti-bacterial wipes or pads
  • Q-tips
  • Hot/cold pack
  • Activated charcoal tablets (effective in absorbing many toxins)
  • Betadine solution (a type of antiseptic iodine medicine for wounds to deter infection)
  • Antibiotic ointment (such a Neosporin)
  • Rubbing alcohol (apply on skin as body cooling agent to aid heat stroke or fever; helps break down oils; acts as a drying agent between toes and skin folds; do not use on wounds as it can damage skin and is not an appropriate antiseptic)
  • Bag Balm (especially useful for treating paw pads)
  • Petroleum jelly (helpful aid for taking temperature)
  • Sterile saline eye solution (to flush out eye contaminants and wounds)
  • Artificial tear gel to lubricate eyes after flushing
  • Eye ointment with no cortisone
  • Epsom salt (mix 1 teaspoon in 2 cups of warm water for drawing out infection and bathing itchy paws and skin)
  • Baking soda (good for soothing skin conditions)
  • Styptic powder (to stop bleeding of torn toenails, etc.)
  • Milk of magnesia (for stomach upset and certain types of poison ingestion)
  • Kaopectate
  • Benadryl (for bug bites and stings)
  • Gentle pet sedative such as Rescue Remedy (available at health food and some pet supply stores)

While this list is extensive, you can certainly pick and choose the items that will be most necessary for your family and cat(s). You can also purchase a ready-made kit, such as the 75-piece Pet First Aid Kit.

Be sure to include the following information in your kit:

  • Vet's phone number
  • Emergency animal hospital phone number
  • Poison control hotline
  • Your name, address, phone number and names of family members

Additional Cat First Aid Tips

The following cat first aid tips can be a huge help if your feline gets injured or becomes ill:

  • Cats' normal body temperature is 98 to 102.5 Fahrenheit - take your cat's temperature under normal conditions to get a baseline for comparison in case s/he gets sick or injured. Contact a vet if your cat's temperature is over 102.5 Fahrenheit.
  • Do not give your cat aspirin, acetaminophen or ibuprofen - since aspirin and other pain relievers can be toxic to any pet, consult your vet and first aid books.
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