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How to look after your dog in an emergency, even if you can’t be with him

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There are many parts of our lives where we take precautions or plan for things we genuinely don't want or expect to happen. Insurance is one such example, where we pay premiums every month to cover our lives, our homes, our cars, our health and so on. We can even take out insurance for our pet dogs so that if they are ever sick or get injured in an accident the costs of getting them back to full health again, are borne by the insurance company and not us.

However, there are some scenarios which could affect your dog, for which there are no insurance policies, but there are precautions you can take.

Dangers of dogs being home alone

Think about this for a moment. If something were to happen suddenly and unexpectedly that prevented you from getting home, how would this affect your dog? Worse still, let’s say you had been taken ill or were involved in an accident that left you incapacitated and unable to call anyone, what would happen to your dog?

Of course, we don't like to think of these events happening to us, but if we remain unemotional about it, we have to accept that they are not only possible but also that it sadly happens to people every day. So if you did have the misfortune of an accident or illness, and with no one aware of your plight, the situation will be, your dog is going to be home alone, with nobody around to look after him or her.

Now initially they may pine for us a bit, but as time went on their natural functions would inevitably kick in and no matter how clean they are normally, they would have to relieve themselves somewhere in the home. Now that in itself would prove to be not much of an issue for us when we got home, other than maybe having to steam clean the carpets. However, should your absence be more than a few hours, and instead ran into days the problems would become much more serious.

A normal, healthy dog might go up to about five days without food. In the circumstances we are describing here their survival instinct may take over to the extent that they are able to force their way into low cupboards where food might be stored. Even in the unlikely event of them being able to do this, it is doubtful that would be able to turn on the faucet for a drink of water. Now it has been known for dogs to drink out of the toilet to survive, but in all seriousness a dog going without any water for more than two or three days is sadly likely to perish.

Another danger might be if you dog is on medication for an illness and of course, with you unable to get home or alert anyone without medicine, food or water their condition deteriorates quickly, putting their survival at risk.

Introducing dog pet care cards

Now all of this might seem a bleak picture, and if you are a dog owner you might be shocked to hear of such distress, however, you will be pleased to know that there is a very simple and practical solution to all of this.

Just as people with certain medical conditions carry round SOS cards with emergency contact details, dog owners can now carry the same sort of card with emergency wallet cards for dogs.

The card has a simple message on the front stating that you are a dog owner, and that your dog is home alone. It asks that whoever sees the card contact the person whose details are the back and to alert them that your dog is home. Anyone looking after you in an emergency would check your pockets in order to both check your identity and also to contact a relative so they are bound to find the emergency wallet card. Another variation of this idea is the same message and details being written on a bright keychain, and attached to your keys.

These seem such simplistic ideas but then the simple ideas are normally the best ones. Emergency wallet cards for dogs and emergency keychains are excellent ways to ensure that your pet will be looked after by a relative or friend if you are unable to. Meanwhile, you can relax knowing your beloved dog is being cared for, whilst concentrating on getting yourself back on your feet from whatever has befallen you.

Author bio

This is a guest post by Angela, a dog lover and a donator of animal shelters. Her website at www.OurPetCard.com has these dog emergency cards and keychains. Please note 10% of sales go to a No-Kill shelter for animals.

This story is a guest submission and does not reflect the views of Dogs Monthly Magazine, always consult a qualified expert.

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