What to do if your dog stops breathing

Hello Everybody,

We took Roxie in to see Dr. Maria for her periodic chiropractic adjustment (see my April 23rd post), and I found out the essential oil blend they use to settle her down is called “Peace and Calming”. They gave us a sample and we use it whenever we have thunder, as Roxie (being the hyper little girl that she is) is extremely thunder-phobic. Our experience with Peace and Calming is it takes at least an hour to start working, but does seem to quiet her down.

Andy Lewis sent out this information that I’d like to pass along, about what to do if your dog stops breathing. Andy is the one who created Dog Food Secrets:

Getting a CPR Certificate for Your Dog

Performing pet CPR can be challenging if you do not have the proper training. Check with your local American Red Cross, neighborhood ASPCA, or animal shelter for information on pet CPR classes.

If you face an emergency, and you do not have formal training, these guidelines may save your dog’s life:

CPR For Dogs Under 30 Pounds

  1. Kneel facing the dog’s chest.
  2. Place one hand on top of the dog’s ribs behind the elbow.
  3. Place the other hand underneath the ribs, behind the elbow.
  4. Press the two hands together, compressing the chest one-half to one inch.
  5. Combine with rescue breathing, 5 compressions for each breath, and keep going for as fast a pace as you can tolerate.

(Note: Rescue breathing on dogs is done by closing the dog’s mouth and breathing into the dog’s nose.)

CPR For Dogs 30 to 90 Pounds

  1. Kneel facing the dog’s back.
  2. Extend your arms straight with one hand resting on top of the other and lock your elbows straight.
  3. Place your joined hands, palms down, where the dog’s left elbow would touch his ribs if he were standing.
  4. Compress the chest about 1 – 3 inches in, depending on the dog’s size.
  5. Combine the compressions with rescue breathing, 5 compressions for each breath, then recheck the pulse to see if it has returned.

CPR For Dogs Over 90 Pounds

Follow the same rules for dogs 30 – 90 lbs., with one exception: Do 10 compressions for each breath, then recheck the pulse.

Hopefully none of us will have to use this information, but you never know.

Hugs to your dogs,


May 27, 2009 | 0 | Home Health Care for Dogs

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