After more than 100 years of training people to perform first aid skills so they can save the lives of others, the Red Cross has released its new Cat and Dog First Aid online course so that owners will know what to do in an emergency until veterinary care is available.

People can access the course on their computer or tablet and go through the content at their own pace. It takes about 30 minutes to complete the course. Participants can stop and pick up where they left off if Fido needs a treat or if it’s time to take him to the dog park.

The interactive course includes:

  • How to determine a pet’s normal vital signs so that owners can notice if there are irregularities
  • Step-by-step instructions and visual aids for what to do if a pet is choking, needs CPR, has a wound or is having a seizure
  • Information on preventative care, health and tips for a pet’s well-being

The Red Cross Pet First Aid App complements the course by providing cat and dog owners with instant access to expert advice, an animal hospital locator, pet-friendly hotels, content on how to include pets in family emergency preparedness plans and more. The app can be downloaded for free in mobile app stores or by texting GETPET to 90999.