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What is an Emergency?
If at any time you have a concern about your pet’s health or well-being and require Willows Out of Hours Emergency Service, please call us and we will help you decide on the best course of action to take.
Often by answering a few questions, you can provide the necessary information that will tell the duty vet if you should bring your pet in right away, or whether you can wait for an examination during normal hours at your own veterinary practice. Even if you find out nothing’s wrong, you'll be glad to have your mind put at ease.
In critical emergencies, time is extremely important. In order for us to be as prepared as possible, please let us know if any of the following applies to your pet:
- Has experienced some kind of trauma, such as being hit by a car or a blunt object or falling more than a few feet.
- Isn't breathing or you can’t feel a heartbeat.
- Is unconscious and won't wake up.
- Is bleeding from the eyes, nose, or mouth (or you see blood in their urine or faeces).
- Might have eaten something toxic such as antifreeze, rat poison, any kind of medication that wasn't prescribed for them, or household cleaners.
- Is straining or unable to urinate - particularly a male cat.
- Shows signs of extreme pain, such as whining, shaking, and refusing to interact with you normally.
- Collapses or suddenly can’t stand up.
- Begins bumping into things or suddenly becomes disoriented.
- Has a swollen abdomen that is hard to the touch, and they are trying to vomit.
- Has been in the heat and you suspect they may have heatstroke.
- Has been vomiting (especially with blood) or has had diarrhoea for more than 24 hours.
- Is having trouble breathing or has something stuck in their throat.
- Has had or is having a seizure.
- Is pregnant and has gone more than three to four hours between starting labour or delivering puppies or kittens.
What to expect
If you're unfamiliar with our location and have never had to bring a pet to us, either as an emergency or for an appointment with one of our Specialists, here is a brief outline of what you can expect and how you can help us to help you:
- Please call 0121 712 7071 to let us know that you are on your way and agree an estimated time of arrival. We will make every effort to have a team member greet you at the door, otherwise ring the doorbell outside the main entrance and we will come and meet you immediately. Please note, no admission to the premises will be allowed without prior arrangement with the duty vet or nurse.
- On arrival in reception you will be asked to fill out registration paperwork. Of course if your pet is critically ill or injured, they will be admitted for triage and emergency treatment immediately.
- If other clients and pets are also in the practice, all cases will be stabilised and prioritised based on the nature of the emergencies as well as order of arrival. Please be supportive of other pet owners and their pets. Your patience is greatly appreciated.
- A fixed emergency fee is charged as your pet needs to be seen outside normal opening hours. This is higher than a routine consultation fee and the duty vet will inform you of this in advance. You will be expected to pay all treatment costs at the time of consultation or upon discharge.
- After a consultation with the duty vet, during which they will discuss your pet’s condition and recommend treatment options and fees, your pet may be admitted to our hospital or they may be able to go home with you, depending upon their condition.
- Our duty team of vets and nurses only work during the night and are off during the day to rest, this means they are fresh to look after all of our patients throughout the night.
- If you have been redirected to Willows by your own veterinary practice and your pet needs to stay with us, we will keep you and your vet updated on your pet's condition at regular intervals and provide detailed discharge information when your pet either returns home or goes back to your own veterinary practice.