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When your pet experiences a medical emergency, you don't want to have a head full of unanswered questions. It pays to be prepared, so here are some answers to frequently asked questions on pet emergency care at our animal hospital, Paws & Claws Pet Medical Center.
A veterinary emergency is any condition in which your pet's life may be in danger, as opposed to more routine problems. Examples include shock, multiple seizures or other neurological crises, heat stroke, traumatic injuries, urinary or digestive blockages, poison ingestion and ingestion of foreign objects
If your pet is straining to urinate, fainting, unable to stand, showing sudden abdominal swelling, or experiencing uncontrollable bleeding, vomiting or diarrhea, you have an emergency on your hands. Other symptoms such as shaking or avoiding personal contact, while less conclusive, may suggest a condition causing extreme pain.
You can approach your injured pet safely, but only if you do it with the proper care and caution. Stay away from the animal's mouth, and don't clutch or hug him. You may want to wrap him loosely in a blanket or towel to keep him still. Muzzling your pet is a wise precaution, but only if he's not vomiting.
In certain situations, it may be smart to apply some basic first aid while getting your pet ready for our emergency veterinarian. These steps may include placing cool, wet towels over a heat-stricken animal, removing an object blocking the airway (either with your fingers or through a modified Heimlich maneuver), and applying pressure to a wound in an effort to stop or slow bleeding.
While you obviously want to handle a veterinary emergency as quickly as humanly possible, there may times when it makes sense to contact our Gresham and Troutdale veterinarian first. This not only lets us instruct you as to the right way to handle your pet, but it also gives us advance notice so we can be completely ready for your pet's arrival. If your pet ingested a poison, tell us what it was or bring a sample of it with you.
Our emergency veterinarian can stop serious bleeding, remove foreign objects or other blockages, perform emergency internal or orthopedic surgery, normalize body temperature, administer drugs to stop dangerous seizures or neutralize poisons, and much more.
The more you know about pet emergency care, the more prepared you'll be when that emergency happens. Call Paws & Claws Pet Medical Center, serving pets in the Gresham and Troutdale areas, at 503-661-1833 to learn more about our emergency services.