P.E.T. for First Responders

Pet Emergency Training (P.E.T.) for First Responders is a Santa Barbara Countywide program provided by C.A.R.E.4Paws, pet emergency and specialty hospital Advanced Veterinary Specialists (AVS) and dog trainer Brian Glen to teach first responders how to care for pets in an emergency situation. Workshops cover most aspects of critical emergency pet care along with dog training tools and techniques. First responders also learn about all of C.A.R.E.4Paws’ programs so that they can share these resources with pet owners in need.

Program launch and press coverage

We launched P.E.T. for First Responders in October 2019 and have since hosted multiple workshops for firefighters from Santa Barbara City and Montecito Fire Departments as well as Santa Barbara County Fire Department and Santa Barbara County Animal Services. We put the program on hold when the COVID-19 pandemic started and plan to resume workshops in 2023.

Check us out in the press: KSBY, The Santa Maria Times, Santa Barbara Independent and Santa Ynez Valley Star.

First responders in discussion
Three dogs resting on carpet
First responders learning pet first aid

Workshop details

Dr. Andrea Wells and her team from AVS cover several topics on how to provide critical care to pets in an emergency situation:

  • Restraining techniques for dogs and cats

  • Checking heart rates and temperatures

  • Pet CPR basics

  • Giving oxygen

  • Dealing with an overheated animal; giving fluids

  • Burns, wound care and broken limbs

Dog trainer Brian Glen provides tools for how to safely handle dogs that act aggressively or are protective of their owners to ensure that these dogs don’t prevent their owners from receiving critical care.

  • Dog psychology basics

  • Common scenarios first responders encounter in the field and best approaches to handle those situations

  • Tools to help manage various types of dog behaviors

  • Worst case scenarios/extreme situations and best approaches

First responders learn about the services C.A.R.E.4Paws offers for pet families in need in Santa Barbara County, including:

  • Low-cost Pet Wellness Clinics with vaccines and mirochips

  • Free and low-cost spays/neuters and veterinary care

  • Assistance with pet food

  • Safe Haven domestic violence assistance

  • Animal abuse awareness 

  • Animal behavior training

  • Paws Up For Pets youth education