If your pet sustains an injury, it is important to know when they require critical veterinary care. Today, our Lakewood vets discuss animal critical care and what you can expect when you bring your pet to a critical care veterinarian.

Veterinary Critical Care

If a pet experiences a sudden severe injury or illness, they will have access to emergency medical services. An emergency or critical care veterinary hospital is similar to a human going to the emergency room for immediate medical intervention. 

While our animal clinic offers emergency services during our regular business hours, animal hospitals that specialize in emergency care will typically be open 24 hours a day. A pet emergency can be very distressing, so owners must be aware of their emergency pet care options in advance. 

Who can offer critical care to pets?

Critical care is a specialized veterinary service that requires the completion of specific qualifications. Some veterinary hospitals have essential specialists who are trained to care for pets with severe illnesses or injuries that need emergency care. 

Qualified veterinarians will have the appropriate knowledge and tools needed to provide critical care for pets in emergencies. Your pet may require to stay at the hospital overnight so their condition can be closely monitored. Regardless of whether your pet has to stay the night, your vet will provide detailed at-home care instructions that must be followed carefully to give your pet the best chance at a successful and speedy recovery.

Keep in mind that not every animal hospital offers emergency or critical care services. Critical animal care requires a specialization, so be sure to know where the nearest hospital is that can offer these services. It's crucial to know which animal hospitals provide emergency and 24-hour services in your area, especially if your pet is having a medical emergency.

Even if you see that an emergency animal hospital offers 24-hour care, it's always ideal to call ahead to make sure that a veterinarian will be available to take care of your pet once you arrive. 

What to Expect in the ICU

The animal intensive care unit (ICU) is a caring and compassionate environment for critically ill animals. Your pet will be closely monitored and given the necessary treatment to remedy a variety of injuries and illnesses.

While your pet is in the ICU, several services are available to them depending on their condition. These services may include:

  • CPR
  • Arterial Blood Gas Test
  • Multimodal Analgesia
  • Continuous Chest Drainage
  • Long-term Mechanical Ventilation
  • Status Epilepticus Treatments
  • Transfusion Therapy
  • Vasopressor Therapy
  • Parenteral Nutrition
  • Peritoneal Dialysis

Your veterinarian will be sure to choose the best treatment method for your pet to get them back on their feet as soon as possible. 

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Has your pet experienced a serious medical injury or illness? Contact our Lakewood vets or take them to your local emergency veterinary specialist.