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Top Ten Pet Emergencies

It’s the middle of the night and your pet is acting funny. Is it an emergency? Or is it okay to wait until morning?

Here are the top ten emergencies that require immediate attention.

Your male cat is straining to urinate. He may be blocked, a condition in which his urethra becomes obstructed.

Your dog is retching, salivating and is restless, and his abdomen is distended. He may be suffering from gastric distension, commonly known as bloat.

Your pet ate rat poison. Successful treatment following ingestion of rat poison depends highly on how quickly you get your pet to a veterinary hospital. If possible, bring the package or the brand name of the poison with you.

Your pet drank antifreeze. If you suspect that your cat or dog may have ingested antifreeze, it is crucial that you be seen immediately. As with rat poison, the key to a successful outcome is diagnosis and treatment as soon as possible.

Your pet has a laceration, abscess or bite wound. Open wounds need to be evaluated and treated as soon as possible. Deep lacerations, those with jagged edges and those with uncontrolled bleeding need to be seen immediately. If you pet has an abscess or was bitten by another animal, particularly a wild animal, you also need to bring your pet in for an exam and treatment.

Your pet was hit by a car. Even if your pet appears to be okay, you should still come in for an exam. Internal injuries are not always immediately apparent. If the car’s wheel passed over your pet, or if there are broken bones, those are also conditions that require a doctor’s care.

Your pet is having kittens or puppies and more than one hour has passed since the birth of the last kitten/puppy. If you pet is laboring unsuccessfully, a kitten or puppy may be stuck in the birth canal.

Your pet is having difficulty breathing and/or is experiencing blue tongue/gums. Respiratory distress is always an emergency. Blue gums and tongue indicate lack of oxygen.

You suspect your pet may be suffering from heatstroke. If your pet is panting frantically and noisily, with thick and excessive saliva, and has been denied fresh air, shade or water, he may be suffering from heatstroke and requires immediate treatment.

Your pet is unconscious. If your pet has suffered a fall, a seizure, or some trauma, and is not conscious, he needs to be examined.

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