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If you believe that you may have a pet animal emergency, then you should immediately get in touch with either your personal veterinarians or closest animal emergency clinic. It is better to ask and not wait. The vet staff will be better able to guide you than you deciding on your own.

[quote style=”grid”]Remember, you know your pet better than anyone else. If you notice your pet behaving in a way that’s unusual, or if something just doesn’t seem right, you may have picked up on a subtle sign of a real problem. To find out, you can call your regular veterinarian, or Animal Emergency Hospital and Urgent Care. By answering a few questions, you will provide the necessary information that will tell the doctor if you should bring your pet in right away, or whether you can wait for an examination during normal office hours. Even if you find out nothing’s wrong, you’ll be glad to have your mind at ease.



Some situations are obvious, such your pet being hit by a car, but others may not be, for example diarrhea.

You should have the following minimal information readily available:

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  • Your vet’s emergency phone number
  • The local emergency clinic number
  • How to get to the emergency clinic
  • Poison Control number (888-426-4435)
  • How to stop bleeding/apply a basic pressure wrap

  • How to muzzle your pet (to keep an injured pet from biting you)
  • How to perform basic CPR on your pet


Poison Control

If you suspect or know that your pet has eaten or been exposed to a toxic substance or product, contact your veterinarian, emergency veterinary clinic, or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center [888-426-4435*] immediately. (* a fee may apply)
How Do You Know if You Have an Emergency?
[quote style=”grid”]It can sometimes  hard to tell a mild health problem from an emergency. But there are a few guidelines I can offer. You need to call your veterinarian if your pet has any of the following symptoms:
  • Seizure, fainting or collapse.
  • Eye injury, no matter how mild.
  • Vomiting or diarrhea — anything more than two or three times within an hour or so.
  • Allergic reactions, such as swelling around the face, or hives, most easily seen on the belly.
  • Any suspected poisoning, including antifreeze, rodent or snail bait, or human medication. Cats are especially sensitive to insecticides (such as flea-control medication for dogs) or any petroleum distillate, such as kerosene and gasoline.
  • Snake or venomous spider bites.
  • Thermal stress — from being either too cold or too hot — even if the pet seems to have recovered. (The internal story could be quite different.) Any wound or laceration that is open and bleeding, or any animal bite.
  • Trauma, such as being hit by a car, even if the pet seems fine. (Again, the situation could be quite different on the inside.)
  • Any respiratory problem, such as sudden, prolonged coughing, trouble breathing or near drowning.
  • Straining to urinate or defecate.
  • Hunched-up appearance indicating abdominal pain, especially if the belly seems tight or distended. When in doubt, err on the side of caution, always.
Better to be dead wrong about a minor medical problem than to have a pet who’s dead because you guessed wrong about a major one. If you’re not sure what to do, call. Your veterinarian may need to see you immediately — and it’s better to let him make that decision.

Dr Marty Becker (http://www.vetstreet.com/dr-marty-becker/how-do-i-know-when-its-really-an-emergency)