Prep for Emergencies
10 Easy Steps to Prepare for Pet Emergencies
- Post your veterinarian's number near your phone.
- Post the number of your 24-hour emergency veterinary facility near your phone.
- Know the location of your 24-hour emergency facility. Get the location and direction for VSH’s Critical Care and Emergency Department.
- Post the phone number of Poison Control (888) 426-4435.
- Make sure your pet always wears an identification tag.
- Microchip your pet so that it can be identified electronically if lost.
- Since emergencies are an unexpected cost for owners, consider getting pet insurance or qualifying for credit plans like Care Credit.
- Keep a muzzle for dogs. Ask your family veterinarian or us about guidelines for its use.
- Consult with your regular veterinarian or us about pet first-aid preparations that makes sense for you and your pet.
- In case of a natural disaster or other large emergency, have a plan to evacuate your pet. Government shelters and hotels often prohibit pets. Get a list of pet-friendly hotels or shelters, and their rules.
10 Easy Steps to Prevent Pet Emergencies
- Keep all dangerous and poisonous substances away from your pet, in a pet-proof cupboard or container. Anti-freeze is especially tasty, and deadly, to pets. Secure containers and clean up any spills in your garage or driveway.
- Pick up any pills or capsules that fall to the floor.
- Cats are far safer kept indoors. Keep dogs on leashes when outside and not fenced-in.
- Transport pets in kennels, especially cats.
- On warmer days, limit your dog’s activity outdoors, and watch for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke (such as excessive panting, hot skin, weakness, etc.) The risk of heat stroke is especially great when the seasons are changing.
- Ask your veterinarian about plants that are toxic in your local area. When you acquire plants, you should ask your landscaper or nursery person about the toxicity of those plants. Keep your house and yard free of these dangers.
- Ask your veterinarian about wildlife threats in your local areas. These dangers may include poisonous insects and snakes, toads, and wild animals like coyotes.
- If you know your pet has a fear of storms, keep the animal indoors if bad weather is likely.
- On the Fourth of July and other holiday celebrations, keep pets away from fireworks, preferably indoors, away from excessive noise and stray explosions.
- Maintain an ongoing relationship with a family veterinarian. Heed his or her advice about routine check-ups and other steps to keep your pet safe and healthy.