When you are a pet owner, it is vital to know some basic pet first aid in case the unthinkable happens and your pet requires your help. Artificial respiration is a procedure that is used to manually circulate oxygen through the system of a dog that has stopped breathing on its own. The goal of this medical intervention is to prevent brain damage and other complications that can occur when oxygen flow to the brain is cut off.
Artificial respiration is a life-saving first-aid measure for dogs that have stopped breathing but still have a heartbeat. It is not effective for dogs that do not have a heartbeat. If you see your dog has stopped breathing, check for a heartbeat by feeling the chest and neck area near the base of the front legs. If there is no heartbeat, then CPR will not be effective and artificial respiration will not help. If your dog does have a heartbeat, then begin artificial respiration immediately.
Two common methods are the mouth-to-snout method and the modified lift method. With the mouth-to-snout method, you simply seal your lips around your dog’s nose and breathe into the nose while watching the chest rise. With the modified lift method, you place your dog on its side and lift the head up so that the chin is level with the horizon. Once again, you seal your lips around the nose and breathe into it while watching the chest rise.
If you are not comfortable with either of these methods, there are many instructional videos available online that can show you how to properly perform artificial respiration on your dog. Time is of the essence when it comes to artificial respiration, so it is important to act quickly. That means you need to be sure to learn how to do artificial respiration before it’s needed, so you can work quickly when the time comes.
There are several reasons why your dog may stop breathing and need artificial respiration. Some of those include:
If your dog stopped breathing, even briefly, it is important to seek veterinary care to ensure there are no long-lasting effects. If you are able to successfully perform artificial respiration on your dog, reach out to Dr. Ron’s Animal Hospital for next steps. Located in Simi Valley, CA, we also serve the surrounding areas of Moorpark, Thousand Oaks, Chatsworth, and areas nearby Ventura County. If your dog requires artificial respiration, call or stop by today so we can ensure your furry friend has completely recovered.