AM Buffalo


Pet Talk Tuesday – When is it a pet emergency

Posted at 5:56 PM, Jul 12, 2022

Dr. Jeff Hess joins us to talk about what constitutes a pet emergency this summer, what we look out for and what pet parents can do at home to take care of their furry friends.

Dr. Jeff says treats always help that anxiety when you are in a new spot. It’s a good thing to bring a treat with you when you take your pet to the vet. Dr. Jeff says “it is always scary when they come to see us, especially in an emergency situation so anything we can do to mitigate that stress can certainly help out.”

How do we know it is an emergency? Dr. Jeff says, “In terms of big things we look for any sort of injury or wound. So if you have a pet who is limping, some kind of cut that is going on, those are emergencies. It’s one of those things you might not have to get emergency care but you certainly want a vet to look at it.”

If you bring them to the vet what do they do? Dr. Jeff says it’s like humans going to the emergency room. The first thing they are going to do is triage. Dr. Jeff says, “we are basically seeing what is going on and how bad it is. Is it something where we have to rush them back right away, give them medications or something like that or is it something they can kind of wait a little bit to be seen. After that it becomes a scenario that, depending on what’s going on we usually give pain meds and make sure they are comfortable so that way we can come chat with the owner and say, hey this is what’s going on and this is how we need to proceed and make those decisions from there.”

Is there a case where you can put a bandage on at home? The answer is yes. Dr. Jeff says, “If there is any kind of bleeding or you want to keep a wound covered, especially if you are not close to your emergency vet. We get people who drive from one or two hours away and that’s a pretty long distance so it’s something where you can definitely apply bandages at home and you want to keep it nice and covered with some gauze or cloth you have at home but you don’t want to put too much pressure on it, you just want to make sure it is covered and you can control the bleeding.”

Dr. Jeff always recommends having a pet first aid kit at home. He says you have to build it yourself and he says it’s kind of like what you have for you at home, so having things like, gauze, cotton, gloves and things like that can certainly make a difference, giving you some more time to decide on how they are doing and how to proceed.

He says, “The other thing is some of the things you need to go to the vet, like a muzzle, something to hoist them up like a blanket or extra t-shirts and things like that because a lot of times when you are going to see them at the emergency vet they are scared, they don’t feel good and in that case we want to make sure they are safe and we can make everyone involved safe.”

For more information visit