Getting emergency vet care for your pet

Would you know what to do if your pet needed urgent treatment? It’s not something most people think about until their pet is sick or injured. Keeping our simple advice in your mind can help to keep you calm in an emergency so you can get your pet the help they need.


What to do in an emergency

If your pet’s life is in danger, you need to take immediate action:

Get your pet to a vet

  • It’s best to ring ahead so they can prepare for an emergency case.
  • If you’re away from home, go to the nearest vet in an emergency.

Give your pet first aid

If your vet practice is closed

  • Always call your vet in any emergency situation. If your vet’s closed, you can still get out-of-hours help. All vet practices provide an out-of-hours service for emergency cases.
  • There may be a recorded message advising you how to access emergency care.
  • You may be directed to another vet surgery, but this will be within an hour’s drive of your usual vet.


Ask your vet about their out-of-hours service next time you take your pet for a check-up so you’re prepared for the unexpected. Keep the out-of-hours phone number in your phone to save precious time in the event of an emergency.

Make sure you note down the name and phone number of the company that provided your out-of-hours care, in case you have any concerns later on and need to contact them directly.

Will you give now to help people and pets in need?

As the cost of living continues to rise, vet care could be out of reach for many.

Donate to our emergency appeal now to provide vital vet care to pets in need and keep families together during this crisis.

First aid for pets

Our vets have put together this guide for pet owners to help you learn which steps to take should a pet get seriously ill or injured.

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Before your vet can give your pet the right treatment, they need to pinpoint exactly what’s wrong. This process is called ‘diagnosis’...

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Our services

Find out more about PDSA's free or low cost vet care service.

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