Ohio considers law allowing EMTs to treat injured pets at emergency scenes

The bill would give responders authority to provide stabilizing treatment to hurt animals before they are transported to a veterinarian

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio lawmakers are considering legislation that would allow first responders to treat injured pets at emergency scenes.

HB 187, which is in the Ohio House, would authorize EMS providers and firefighters to provide stabilizing treatment to hurt dogs, cats and other animals, Tallmadge Express reports.

Responders would not be able to administer drugs without consulting a veterinarian, and it would not enable an emergency response for an injured pet, according to Rep. Tim Ginter (R-Salem), the primary sponsor of the bill.

"This bill simply states that in an emergency situation, where an EMT would already be on the scene, stabilizing care can also be administered to an animal," Ginter during a hearing for the bill.

EMTs would be able to use skills to stop bleeding or immobilize an injured limb before the animal is transported to a veterinarian for further care.

"Obviously, EMTs are not veterinarians, nor are we trying to make them into veterinarians with this bill," Ginter said in testimony submitted to the health committee. "I believe that this common-sense, permissive language will allow the EMTs to exercise judgment in handling various emergency situations."

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