The cubic capacity of a puppy’s chest is quite small, and too heroic efforts to fill it may cause serious trouble. The lungs of the average human being are too strong to permit safe `mouth-to-mouth’ inflation of the lungs of a puppy. It is safer to employ a small-bore tube provided with a small hole in the lumen which may be covered and uncovered by the finger, with a close watch upon the amount of expansion induced. One must blow gently and at intervals of 2 to 3 seconds, allowing the puppy’s chest.
A simple blow tube may be devised by removing the ink tube, the plastic cap, and the metal tip, from an ordinary ball-point pen. The tapered end of the tube is inserted into the puppy’s mouth, and respiration is started by blowing gently through the other end. If a small hole has been made half-way down the tube into the lumen of the air passage, this may be covered and uncovered at 2 second intervals with the tip of the finger. When the ribs rise as the lungs fill, stop blowing, and wait for the chest to empty by its own elasticity.
The hole bored into the lumen of the tube acts as a safety valve against the application of too much air pressure, and it can be closed with the tip of the finger if the pressure needs increasing. The inflation is continued until respiration is completely established. When the puppy of its own volition has taken one or more gulps of air artificial respiration may be carried on by the method shown in Fig. 6.
Whenever the puppy makes an effort to breathe but needs help, this is usually the better course to adopt and, in most instances, it is successful.
To carry out the operation, the puppy is held with the thumbs and fingers of both hands, its belly facing the operator and its back turned away.
First, the head turns backwards and downwards, the hind feet simultaneously rising upwards.
After this, the hind feet turn the circle and the head comes up again.
Each full turn of the puppy should take about 3 seconds, then after a second’s rest the turning is repeated until normal breathing is restored.
It is good practice to draw the outline of a puppy on a piece of cardboard, cut it out with scissors, and transfix it on a skewer through the spot marked X. Revolve the puppy head down, tail up and so on, and become accustomed to the positions. Then try to imitate these without the skewer. This procedure is well worth learning as it saves more puppies than any other method when there is difficulty in getting them to start breathing.
Other instruments useful for inflating the lungs include a rubber car syringe, which may be bought from a chemist; a small round plastic funnel which will fit snugly over the puppy’s head. This has the advantage that when air is blown into the funnel, it travels down the puppy’s nostrils rather than directly down the trachea. In the larger breeds the cardboard central tube of a toilet roll may be placed over the head or muzzle and blown through.
The ear syringe may also be used as a feeding bottle. The puppy is forced to suck against a vacuum within the bulb of the syringe and there is no fear of choking (provided an impatient attendant does not squeeze