in case of emergency

In the event that your pet experiences an injury or requires immediate healthcare attention, please follow these guidelines:

  • Do not panic – remain calm.
  • Protect yourself from injury – pets in pain may scratch or bite. You may want to carefully wrap a large towel around your pet.
  • If there is a chance of back or neck injury, carefully place your pet on a wooden board or padded ironing board and minimize movement during transportation.
  • Apply direct pressure to any area with active bleeding. In case of possible poisoning, seek immediate treatment and bring any product packaging.
  • Call your family veterinarian for advice in any possible emergency situation.
  • Call the Pet Emergency & Specialty Center for information and instructions.
  • For your pet’s safety, please post our number for future reference. In some emergency situations, minutes may count. We welcome any questions concerning your pet’s health. Our experienced staff is available around the clock to assist you. Please see driving directions and contact information for both of our hospitals here.

Listen to Audio

KPBS Interview Preparing for a Pet's
Medical Emergency

how to recognize a pet emergency

You know your pet better than anyone — however, pets may be good at hiding pain and signs of illness. Here are some signs to watch for that may indicate the need for a veterinarian visit, or a possible emergency:

  • A dramatic increase in respiratory rate.
  • Changes in gum color, from healthy pink to white, yellow or gray.
  • Unusual changes in behavior, such as aggression or unresponsiveness.
  • Dramatic shifts in appetite, thirst, or weight.
  • Unusual urination or stools.