1. Artificial Respiration
1.1 Cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR
CPR is an emergency procedure that combines chest compression with different artificial means and methods. The importance of this is;
? to manually preserve the intact brain function
? to restore spontaneous blood circulation and the breathing when an animal is in cardiac arrest for whatever reason.
CPR is required in most life-threatening situations. Cessation of breathing can be followed by heart stoppage, or heart stoppage can be followed by cessation of breathing.
CPR can be performed by one person. It is more successful when done by two. One person does the artificial respiration while the other does the chest compressions.
Heart stoppage or cessation of breathing can be restored by;
1.1 Artificial respiration- The emergency procedure to restore breathing in an unconscious animal by manual, mechanical or mouth to mouth methods to restore inhaling and breathing.
1.2 Mechanical ventilation is a machine that will replace natural or spontaneous breathing by a ventilator. A ventilator is used by trained operators in theatre and emergency units such as in ambulances and emergency units in hospital.
1.3 Heart massage or chest compressions are the methods used when no heartbeat can be felt or heard in an animal. When chest compressions are combined with artificial respiration, it is called cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR.
1.4 Assessing the situation
In the cases of cessation of breathing, or possible heart stoppage caused whatever life threatening reason, it is important to assess the situation and correctly determine which basic life-support technique will be required.
These can be;
? Shock from violence, fireworks, lightning, etc.
? Epilepsy or seizures
? Car accident
? Head injury
? Electrical shock
? Obstructed airway or choking
2. Assessment 1: Is the dog breathing?
Observe the chest. Does it rise and fall? Put your ear and cheek close to the nose and observe, hear and feel for air against your cheek.
? Yes: - the dog is breathing. Pull the tongue clear from the airway
? No: The dog is not breathing.
Feel for a pulse at the femoral artery located on the inside of the mid-thigh. If there is no pulse, start with CPR.
Finding the femoral artery
Counting the pulse
2.3 Artificial Respiration
? Lay the dog on a flat surface with his right side down.
? Open his mouth and pull his tongue forward as far out as possible
? Clear any secretions with a cloth, water or handkerchief.
? Check and clear any foreign body if present
? Check for broken teeth that might be swallowed
? If it is impossible to dislodge his jaws, confirm if circumstances allow for it to perform the Heimlich Manoeuvre.
? Pull the dog’s tongue forward so it is even with the teeth
? Close the dog’s mouth.
? Place your mouth over the dog’s nose.
? Blow gently into the dog’s nostrils.
? The chest will expand
? Release your mouth to let the air return.
? Excess air will escape through the dog’s lips, preventing over inflation of the lungs and overdistension of the stomach.
? If the chest does not rise and fall, blow more forcefully or seal the lips.
Continue at a rate of 20 to 30 breaths per minute (one breath every two to three seconds). Continue until the dog breathes on his own.
2.5 For medium and large dogs
? Proceed as for small dogs, but seal the lips by placing a hand around the dog’s muzzle to prevent the escape of air.
? If the chest does not rise and fall, blow more forcefully.
? The breathing rate is 20 breaths per minute (one breath every three seconds).
3. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR
Study all 8-video links to CPR. It will give the learner a better understanding of what is meant in the descriptions given below.
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation or CPR is a where artificial respiration and heart massage is used simultaneously.
Note: If an injured animal needs a heart massage, it will also need artificial respiration. If the dog resists any attempts to perform CPR on him, he or she most probably does not need CPR.
3.2 Small dogs up to 13 kg
? Place the dog on a flat surface, right side down.
? Place your cupped hands on either side of the rib cage over the heart, immediately behind the point of the elbow.
? With puppies, use your thumb on one side of the chest and the rest of your fingers on the other
? Depending on the size of the animal, compress the chest approximately 2 to 4 cm for a count of 1, and release it for a count of 1.
? Continue at a rate of 100 compressions per minute
? With one-person CPR, administer a breath after every five compressions.
? With two-person CPR, administer a breath after every two to three compressions.
3.3 For medium and large dogs
? Place the dog on a flat surface, right side down.
? Position yourself behind the dog’s back.
? Place the heel of one hand over the widest portion of the rib cage, almost 2/3 from the head and not over the heart.
? Place the heel of your other hand on top of the first.
? Keep both elbows straight and push down firmly on the rib cage.
? Compress the chest one-quarter to one-third of its width.
? Compress for a count of 1, then release for a count of 1.
? Continue at a rate of 80 com- pressions per minute.
With one-person CPR, administer a breath after every five compressions. With two-person CPR, administer a breath after every two to three compressions.
Continue CPR until the dog breathes on his own and has a steady pulse. If vital signs do not return after 10 minutes of CPR, the probability of success is remote. Consider stopping CPR.
Note: CPR has the potential to cause complications, including broken ribs and pneumothorax.
Pneumothorax is a condition in which air or other gas is present in the pleural cavity and which occurs spontaneously as a result of disease or injury of lung tissue, rupture of air-filled pulmonary cysts, or puncture of the chest wall or is induced as a therapeutic measure to collapse the lung.
It is a condition characterize by the buildup of air
Also, never practice artificial respiration or heart massage on a healthy dog; you can seriously injure the dog.
Video links to CPR