What Are the Different Types of Veterinary Emergency Care?

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  • Written By: Patti Kate
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 17 October 2019
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Veterinary emergency care often involves treating household pets and domestic farm animals for trauma. An animal that is experiencing breathing difficulties may require emergency care for respiratory distress. It is common to find pet clinics that treat dogs and cats for allergic reactions that require emergency care. While many emergency care veterinarians only treat dogs and cats, there are emergency care veterinarians that specialize in treating exotic animals, such as parrots and lizards.

Animals suffering from heatstroke often require veterinary emergency care to survive. If not treated promptly, this condition may be fatal for many domestic pets, such as dogs, cats, and birds. The course of treatment will typically depend upon the species of animal that has been affected. In many cases, the animal may require intravenous fluid therapy, another type of emergency care.

When a pet dog or cat has become burned, this is considered a veterinary emergency. Veterinary emergency care for burns require special services from a qualified veterinarian. To prevent infection, a dog or cat may be given a course of antibiotics, and the veterinarian may apply a sterile bandage to the burned area.

One very common type of veterinary emergency care is laboratory technician services. In the case of trauma due to impact, diagnostic techniques, such as X-rays, can determine if there are fractures involved. A computed tomography (CT) scan can help make a diagnosis of head trauma.


Another common type of veterinary emergency care is treatment for toxicity. Pets that have ingested toxic substances, such as household chemicals, are often treated at emergency clinics. Depending upon the poison and amount that has been ingested by the animal, toxicity can cause vomiting, seizures, or even cardiac arrest.

A pet may be allergic to a medication, food, or even a flea product. When an animal suffers an allergic reaction, symptoms may vary from mild discomfort and skin rash, to severe respiratory distress. Treatment for allergic reactions is a type of veterinary emergency care that can save a pet's life.

Pregnant dogs and cats may experience difficulty during labor. In some cases, a pet may require emergency Cesarian sections (C-sections). This is a type of veterinary emergency care that requires surgical intervention to ensure the safe delivery of a litter of puppies or kittens.

Oxygen therapy is a type of veterinary emergency care often given to dogs and cats. Commonly referred to as hyperbaric oxygen therapy, this emergency care can help an animal with various types of neurological disorders, such as epilepsy. Some pets that suffer from congestive heart failure may also benefit from this type of emergency care.


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