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Emergencies

If you have a veterinary emergency, please call us at (616) 361-9911 or head to our hospital in Grand Rapids. Please do not email us for emergency care.

How to Tell if Your Pet is Having an Emergency

Not all pet injuries and illnesses require immediate medical attention. However, if you pet is experiencing any one of the below pet health emergency symptoms, please call us or visit our animal hospital right away:

  • Not breathing or visibly struggling to breathe

  • Unresponsive or unable to rouse

  • Obvious broken bone

  • Open wounds or active bleeding

  • Anaphylactic shock

  • Heatstroke

  • Collapse

  • Gums or tongue are pale (white) or blue

  • Bite or sting from a venomous snake or insect or that is causing a severe reaction

  • Bite wounds

  • Sudden paralysis of the back legs

  • Seizures that last longer than five minutes, multiple seizures in a row, or the first seizure in your pet

  • Severe abdominal distension

This list is not exhaustive and does not cover all possible emergency symptoms. If you have questions about your pet’s symptoms or are concerned that they may be experiencing an emergency, please call us at (616) 361-9911. The emergency care team at Animal Emergency Hospital is available to assist you 24/7. We have 11 skilled veterinarians on staff to make sure your pet gets the best possible critical care in the Grand Rapids area.

Cat being examined

What to do in a Pet Emergency

If your pet is currently experiencing an emergency, follow these steps to keep your pet safe and give them the best possible chance at a full recovery:

  1. Remain as calm as possible. If you panic, you may forget something or even cause your pet to feel more stressed and scared than they probably already are.

  2. If your pet is in an unsafe location, such as in the road or near a dangerous animal, carefully move them to a safe spot. Try not to move your pet more than is absolutely necessary, as too much movement may worsen their injuries.

  3. Contact us at (616) 361-9911 right away. Let us know what is going on with your pet so that we know what to expect when you arrive.

  4. Load your pet into your vehicle as carefully as possible. If necessary, use towels as a makeshift stretcher. Animals in severe pain may become aggressive, so you may need to loosely drape a soft cloth over your pet’s eyes to help them calm down.

  5. Drive quickly and carefully to us and follow all instructions upon arrival.

When in doubt, take your pet straight to the emergency vet. We can help you assess the situation and make sure that your pet gets the care they need.