How To Prepare For A Pet Emergency

Emergencies can happen at any time.

If you’re a lucky pet owner, you might not have faced an emergency situation yet, but a majority of people have felt the fright of an emergency situation. You can never predict when a pet will need immediate care, so it’s important to be prepared beforehand. In the case of an emergency, even minutes and seconds can make all the difference in the world, and being prepared can literally save your pet’s life. The last thing you want to worry about if and when you are in the situation is to figure out a plan on the spot. Here are some tips to remember to be more prepared in the future:


Sometimes, you might not know what constitutes as an emergency and what doesn’t. You know your pet better than anyone else however, so if something seems like it’s off or not right, visit the veterinarian right away because it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Some situations require immediate attention, and if

your pet shows signs of any of these, you need to visit the nearest emergency room as soon as possible:

  • Seizures and/or staggering
  • Eye injuries
  • Unconsciousness
  • Obvious signs of pain or extreme anxiety
  • Choking, difficulty breathing, or non-stop coughing and gagging
  • Inability to pass urine or feces, or obvious pain associated with these activities
  • Fractured bones, severe lameness, or inability to move the limb(s)
  • Severe vomiting or diarrhea (at least 2 episodes over 24 hours), especially if this is combined with other symptoms listed here.
  • Severe bleeding that doesn’t stop within 5 minutes
  • Bleeding from nose, mouth or rectum; blood in urine, or coughing up blood
  • If your pet has taken something poisonous, like antifreeze, xylitol, chocolate, poison etc.
  • Bulging eyes or sudden blindness
  • Burns or injuries in which a bone is exposed
  • A fever of over 104 degrees Fahrenheit along with profound lethargy
  • Inability to maintain balance
  • Penetrating wounds to the chest

Though these aren’t the only conditions that require the emergency room, it is a comprehensive list of major causes that land pets in the emergency room.



an effort to be prepared, keep a list of emergency numbers that is convenient to reach immediately: the vet’s phone number, the local emergency clinic number, poison control, and an emergency contact to look after any other pets if you have them. Moreover, make sure you know the direction towards the emergency clinic so that you don’t get lost on the way. You can drive down to the clinic on a free day so that you can familiarize yourself with the route. Moreover, some clinics also have special policies, so getting to know them beforehand can save you some trouble.

Keep a detailed file of your pet’s health history in a convenient place too. Vets are going to want to know any past procedures or visits and why, and this can help them get an overview of your pet and plan their treatment. Moreover, the record can provide any past medication history, which is extremely important information.

Learning to do basic CPR can also be

extremely helpful in emergencies. Also, learning to apply a basic pressure wrap to stop bleeding can also help to deal with situations like accidents. Some organizations offer classes that can teach basic skills like these to pet owners, so look for any places that can offer the same around your area. Dog owners especially can benefits from learning the Heimlich maneuver because dogs have a higher risk of choking and gagging on objects. Moreover, dogs can become frightened easily and bite their owners when they’re being picked up or treated, so dog owners might also want to keep a homemade muzzle around to avoid being bitten when taking their pet to the clinic.

Being prepared can help you act better during emergencies, and this in turn could help your pet get treated quicker and heal better. A little effort right now can go a long way in the future.