What is an Emergency?

What is an Emergency?

A veterinarian is checking on a a kitten at her office.

In a medical emergency, minutes matter. If your pet is injured in an accident or you notice any of the following signs or symptoms, please bring your pet in immediately. If you’re not sure if pet emergency care is necessary, please call your primary care veterinarian, or call us anytime, day or night, at (817) 900-2000.

  • Altered gait or inability to walk
  • Bleeding (severe lacerations and abdominal)
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Dog fight wounds
  • Eye injuries
  • Frostbite
  • Gastrointestinal foreign bodies
  • Heat stroke
  • Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) in young animals
  • Labor that is not progressing
  • Lacerations and serious wounds
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Pale gums
  • Paralysis
  • Poisoning
  • Rapid breathing
  • Seizures
  • Snake bites
  • Stomach bloat/Gastric Dilatation Volvulus
  • Traumatic injury (such as hit by car)
  • Urination difficulty
  • Vaccine or medication reactions
  • Vomiting and/or diarrhea

If your pet is injured...

A severely injured pet may be aggressive toward you, so it’s important to first protect yourself from injury. There are ways you can help your injured pet prepare for transport to Burleson Animal Emergency Hospital.

For dogs

Approach your dog slowly and calmly. Kneel down and say the dog’s name. If the dog shows aggression, call for help. If he’s passive, fashion a makeshift stretcher and gently lift him onto it. Take care to support his neck and back in case he’s suffered any spinal injuries.

For cats

Gently place a blanket or towel over the cat’s head to prevent biting, then slowly lift the cat and place her in an open-topped carrier or box. Take care to support the cat’s head and avoid twisting her neck in case she’s suffered a spinal injury.

Once you feel confident and safe transporting your pet, immediately bring them to Burleson Animal Emergency Hospital. Ask a friend or family member to call us at (817) 900-2000 so we know to expect you and your pet.

First Aid at Home

Most emergencies require immediate veterinary care, but to help stabilize your pet for transportation you may use some of these first aid methods.

External bleeding: Try elevating and applying pressure to the wound.

Choking: Place your fingers in pet’s mouth to see if you can remove the blockage. If not, perform a modified Heimlich maneuver by giving a sharp rap to your pet’s chest. This should dislodge the object.

CPR: CPR may be necessary if your pet remains unconscious after you have removed the choking object.

  1. Check if pet is breathing; if not, place pet on his side and perform artificial respiration by extending his head and neck, holding his jaws closed, and blowing into his nostrils once every three seconds. (Ensure that no air escapes between your mouth and your pet’s nose.)
  2. If you don’t feel a heartbeat, incorporate cardiac massage while administering artificial respiration—three quick, firm chest compressions for every respiration—until your pet resumes breathing on his own.


Pets get into things—if you think your pet has eaten something toxic, please call either your primary care veterinarian, Burleson Animal Emergency Hospital at 817-900-2000, or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center 24-hour hotline at 888-426-4435 (a fee may apply). At the Poison Control Center, expert toxicologists will consider the age and health of your pet, what and how much they ate, and then make a recommendation for best next steps.