When a veterinary emergency arises, it’s important that you know a local emergency veterinary clinic location who can serve your after-hours needs. It’s also important that you have a routine veterinarian who can handle emergency situations in-house.
Why Your Routine Vet Should Offer Veterinary Emergency Services
When you choose a local vet to meet your veterinary needs, you likely select a clinic based on the veterinarians, the clinic reputation, and the services offered. One thing that many pet parents don’t look for, however, is whether that veterinarian can meet immediate emergency needs.
Why is it important for your vet to offer emergency care? Because your routine vet knows your pet. They know your pet’s history, they have access to your pet’s veterinary chart, they know what medical conditions your pet has, and they know what medications your pet is on. During times of an emergency, having this information on hand can save precious time in providing your pet with the care that they need.
Veterinary Emergency Services
The type of emergency veterinary services that a veterinary clinic offers can vary from clinic to clinic.
Here at Leesville Animal Hospital in North Raleigh, we may be a “small”, family-owned clinic, but we are also able to provide our clients with emergency veterinary care when needed. Our 12,000 square foot animal hospital consists of much more than patient rooms and a reception! Our facility also has an in-house lab, an in-house pharmacy, and a surgical suite all of which help us to provide emergency care for your pets. We also have a full suite of diagnostic tools at our disposal which allows us to perform x-rays, electrocardiographs, ultrasounds, endoscopies, fluid and tissue cytology, urinalysis, complete blood panels, and serum chemistries.
What is a Veterinary Emergency?
There are many situations that can constitute an emergency and sometimes emergency care can mean providing supportive care so that the right specialist can be contacted. What’s important, though, is that your veterinarian is able to provide that emergency or supportive care.
Some of the types of emergencies that veterinary clinics manage include:
- Traumatic injury (such as being hit by a car)
- Stabilization following seizures or a stroke
- Choking or blocked airways
- Diabetic emergencies
- Gastric torsion (also known as “bloat”)
- Bites wounds (dogs, spiders, snakes, etc.)
- Heatstroke or hypothermia
- Swallowing of foreign objects
- Pain management
- Difficulty with urination or defecation
- Unexplained weakness or lack of coordination
Always Have an Emergency Vet Care Plan in Place
As a pet parent, it’s important that you always have an emergency care plan in place for your pet just as you would for a human member of your family.
Keep Emergency Veterinary Clinic Information On Hand
Keep the number and address of three local emergency veterinary clinics that provide after-hours care in a prominent place in your home. We advise keeping this information on your refrigerator as well as having the addresses of the clinics recorded in your car’s GPS. It’s also helpful to keep a copy of contact information for these clinics in your car glove box.
Have Your Veterinarian’s Phone Number Programmed In Your Phone
It’s always a good idea to have your routine veterinary clinic’s phone number programmed into your phone. In the case of an emergency, this will allow you to call ahead to let them know that you are on your way and why you are coming. This will also allow you to call and request that your pet’s record be faxed to an emergency clinic if you are closer to an emergency clinic and time is of the essence.
Have an Emergency Vet Care Fund Set Aside
Most households with pets don’t make a habit of setting aside a little money for emergency vet care and this is a big mistake. When an emergency strikes, the last thing you want to have to do is worry about money! Try to establish a routine of setting a little money aside each month towards your pet’s emergency care fund and that way you won’t need to think twice when it comes to providing immediate veterinary care in any situation.
Some families also make a habit of keeping a credit card open just for their pet’s care. For example, each month they purchase preventative medications and then pay off their credit card balance so that the card stays open but has no balance. They can then use the balance of the card if need be should an emergency situation arise.
Have a Plan and Make Sure That Your Family Knows Your Plan
When emergencies arise, some of us are able to keep a calm head and some of us aren’t. You can help everyone in your family to be a little calmer should a veterinary emergency arise by having a plan in place. Create your plan by answering these questions:
- When should your pet be taken to their routine vet? (What hours is your vet open and are there any services that they are unable to provide? For example, not all veterinarians are equipped to handle broken bones or snake bites)
- How is emergency vet care to be paid for? (Does everyone have access to the funds should they be the one taking your pet for care?)
- Which emergency vet clinic is your preferred option?
- How should you be contacted if you are not with your pet when the emergency happens?
Looking For a Raleigh Vet Who Can Provide Veterinary Emergency Care?
If you’re looking for a veterinarian in North Raleigh who can provide emergency veterinary care to your pet should the need arise, we’re here for you. Our team of expertly trained veterinarians are experienced in a full range of routine and emergency veterinary services and would be happy to welcome you to our family. Just give us a call today at (919)870-7000 to set up an appointment so that we can get to know each other!