Do You Know How To Perform Dog CPR?

I was on Pinterest today and found this interesting infographic with some detailed information on how to perform CPR on a dog.

A couple years ago at our monthly guide dog meeting we had a little dog CPR class to show us puppy raisers how to perform CPR with our dogs in case of an emergency.  I had the opportunity to work with a stuffed dog built for dog CPR classes.  I don’t remember all the details, but I do remember a few things from that CPR class that I hopefully won’t ever have to use with my dogs.

When I saw the Dog CPR infographic today I thought it would be a good idea to post here on the Puppy In Training blog as reminder for myself and so others could see some of the basics on how give a dog cpr.

How To Perform CPR On A Dog

Here’s the Infographic from Pinterest:


The source is listed as American Red Cross, but I couldn’t find it anywhere on their website.  I still wanted to credit them with a link back.

In case you can’t see the image above here are the details from the dog cpr infographic:

Saving Your Pet With CPR

With pets increasingly being treated like a member of the family, many owners are learning emergency techniques like CPR to keep their pet alive before bringing it to a veterinarian

If there is no breathing and no pulse begin CPR immediately.

  • Check For Breathing And Pulse – Check pulse using middle and index finger below the wrist, inner thigh (femoral artery), below the ankle or where left elbow touches the chest.
  • Look For Other Warning Signs
    • Gums and lips will appear gray colored
    • Pupils will be dilated and not responsive to light
  • If Not Breathing, Give Breath To Animal
    • Cats And Smal Dogs – Place your mouth over its nose and mouth to blow air in.
    • Medium-Large Dogs – Place your mouth over its nose to blow air in.
  • Heimlich Manuever – If breath won’t go in, airway may be blocked. Turn dog upside down, with its back against your chest.  Wrap your arms around the dog and clasp your arms around the dog and clasp your hand together just below its rib cage (since you’re holding the dog upside down, it’s above the rib cage, in the abdomen).  Using both arms, give five sharp thrusts to the abdomen.  Then check its mouth or airway for object.  If you see it remove it and give 2 more rescue breaths.
  • Start Compression If No Pulse – Lay animal on right side and place hands over ribs where its elbow touches the chest.  Begin compressions.  Do not give compressions if dog has a pulse.
  • Repeat Procedure
    • Check pulse after 1 minute and then after every few minutes.
    • Continue giving CPR until the animal has a pulse and is breathing.
    • Stop CPR after 20 minutes
Animal Size Compress Chest Compressions Per Breath Of Air
Cats/Small Dog (under 30 lbs) 1 1/2 – 1 inch 5
Medium-Large Dog (30-90 lbs) 1 – 3 inch 5
Giant Dog (over 90 lbs) 1 – 3 inch 10

So there you go, some basic instructions on dog CPR. Hopefully you never have to perform CPR on a dog, but just in case you now know a little bit about how it’s done or at least you can look back an find this resource on the Puppy In Training blog.

Have you ever given CPR to a dog?  Have you ever sat in a dog CPR class?  Tell us about your experiences in the comment section below.


  1. says

    This is great information! It hadn’t even occurred to me that you could perform CPR on a dog. The dog has her own first aid kit, and the vet’s number is saved to my phone, but that’s as far as I have taken first aid for her. I am going to bookmark this page for sure.

    And I though Pinterest was just for recipes!

    • says

      @Phil, hopefully you never have to use the instructions on this dog CPR infographic, but just in case you have it bookmarked now. My sister and girlfriend showed me pinterest a few months ago. Lots of interesting pictures and definitely good if you’re into crafts and recipes.

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