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Old July 7th, 2004, 11:36 AM
MBRA518 MBRA518 is offline
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When Does Your Pet Need to go to the Vet?

OK - people often get chewed out here for posting a problem (some warranted albeit - but some people just don't know what is serious and what is not).... so - when do you need to take a pet to the vet and when can you wait and see?

I'm a pretty experienced pet owner - so I'm probably more familiar with what's serious and what is not than many owners and I know there are many very experienced pet owners and rescue helpers on this board that will have some great advise also... so when does your pet need to go to the vet?

This is mostly from one of those dog shows on TLC but it is basically what I go by:

Throwing up is not abnormal for a dog - so you don't need to run to the vet every time your dog vomits UNLESS: it happens more than 3 times in 2 hours - or more than 6 times in 12 hours or there is blood in the vomit - if that is the case - go to the vet.

If there is blood in the poo or urine - or your pet has difficulty pooping or urinating - go to the vet

A cut or scrap on your pet should follow the same lines as for yourself - if the cut were on you - if you would clean and bandage it yourself - you can likely do that for your pet - however anything large enough to require stitches or if you can't QUICKLY stop the bleeding - go to the vet.

If your pet is hit by a car, or otherwise suffers a big trauma - go to the vet ASAP - even if it appears nothing is wrong, internal injuries sometimes can't be detected - especially if the animal is in shock

For physical soreness/lameness... if is bad enough that the animal will not/can not walk - go to the vet. For a mild limp - check the limb/area thoroughly for thorns, cuts overly tender spots, if any are found deal with them if you can - if you can't - off to the vet... if you can't determine what is wrong and it is MILD - give it a day, if no improvement go to the vet.

If your pet has an eye problem - eyes closed/can't open - puss, excess running of the eye or a foreign object in the eye that you can't easily remove (like a hair you can get out wouldn't be a big deal) Go to the vet - eyes are not to be messed with.

If your pet in suddenly sick or physically hurt with no explanation - go to the vet

If you are unsure what is mild enough of a problem to deal with yourself - discuss it with your vet - not the message board - most vets will speak to you on the phone or call you back if something is going on that you are not sure how to deal with.

You should also have an after hours number for your vet - be that an emergency on call service from you regular vet, or one in your area, if those are not available in your area - find out where the nearest emergency 24 hour clinic is and have that number near your phone as well.

I've heard it said that you should take your pet to the vet if it was something you would go to the doctor for... this is not always good reasoning - pets are not humans, something what is not that big of a deal for you can be deadly for your pet, and they can't tell you how much or were it hurts - people can. I know that I have taken my pets to the vet for things I wouldn't not have gone to the Dr for - but then I never go to the Dr other than reg visits unless I'm in real pain - that's my choice - I don't think it's fair to force that on my pets.

I'd like to hear from other people on this too - any additions or revisions - or maybe breed or species specific issues that really require your vets help.
  #2  
Old July 7th, 2004, 12:13 PM
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glasslass glasslass is offline
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Great post!!

May I add one more?

Keep your dog's medical history and vet info in a convenient location and take it with you if you have to go to an emergency vet clinic. It may help the emergency vet, who may not be familiar with your pet, assess what the problem is and to be sure any medications don't have adverse effects when combined with any new medications or treatments.
  #3  
Old July 28th, 2004, 01:36 PM
MBRA518 MBRA518 is offline
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Seems like we need this one again - so from the depths it rises
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Old July 28th, 2004, 01:52 PM
sammiec sammiec is offline
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WOW MBRA!!! Fantastic post!! I just wish that this one won't be lost in the forever list of threads. Maybe we can have a Moderator (hint hint) keep this one as a special thread that is at the beginning of the forum!!!
You covered all the big ticket items! Nice work.

Please, if there is something that you are concerned about don't hesitate to call the clinic at least. They will help over the phone and direct you for further action!!
  #5  
Old July 28th, 2004, 01:57 PM
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Can someone just explain to me,if it is of enough concern to sit here and ask someone that you dont even know on the internet for advice if something is wrong with your dog or cat,why cant you just call your vet?????????????????????????????????
  #6  
Old July 28th, 2004, 02:11 PM
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Great post! Heidi, it is usualy the money issue.
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Old November 8th, 2006, 08:43 AM
vfrohloff vfrohloff is offline
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Just because a post is over 2 years old doesn't mean that valuable information can't be added to it or gained from it.
  #8  
Old November 8th, 2006, 02:33 PM
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Yeah, but sometimes it's better to start a new one to get your point across clearer.
  #9  
Old November 8th, 2006, 08:21 PM
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Thanks Prin.
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  #10  
Old November 8th, 2006, 08:49 PM
Prin Prin is offline
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It's ok. I agree. aylith417 has a good point, and I just don't want it to disappear because people come in here and say "Oh, this is an old one".
  #11  
Old February 19th, 2007, 12:17 AM
jackyboy jackyboy is offline
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i just want to say i did get some good advice on my thread and no one was rude, the comment i made was about other's that i read and before anyone had replied to mine. thank all who gave me advice
  #12  
Old August 29th, 2007, 01:26 AM
shannonxj shannonxj is offline
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i go to the vet when my pet looks different and also i go to vets when there is a problem.
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  #13  
Old September 10th, 2007, 10:09 PM
cknipp cknipp is offline
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hi, i'm new here and have read alot of your comments. i'm from ohio and we have to pay alot for our insurance. insurance poor, i call it. i do what i can for the animals i rescue. should i leave a puppy in the middle of the night running down the middle of the road alone because i can't afford to pay a vet bill. no! i chase it down, even with it fighting me, and take it home and love it until whatever monster mistreated it, fades from her mind. it never goes away, but it eases. i try to find a way to spay her, even though i don't make alot of money, and get her her shots. she won't co-operate though. i have to find some way to knock her out so i can take her. should i have left the 6mn. cat stay on my electric pole so the dogs could chase him and possibly kill him? no, i neuter him and keep him in the house. how about the puppy someone said they would throw out of the car if they couldn't get rid of it? nope! i am a softie and hate to see animals suffer, but i also can't afford alot of vet bills. you said i shouldn't be a pet owner. sorry, but for some i am their last chance. so to those who are rude, i will keep taking care of them the best i can and for those who understand, thanks for the thoughts and this site to help.
  #14  
Old September 18th, 2007, 10:52 AM
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This is an old post so I don't know if anyone's reading it anymore, but I understand having the question. The other day my cat had a bloody nose. I don't want to take him to the vet for a bloody nose - at least not until I know a little more about it. This is a good site to get some immediate information on what a bloody nose might mean (it turned out to be a boo-boo inflicted by his little sister).

If I had called my vet, I am 100% sure that they would have said they would want to see him to make a diagnosis. They're professionals and they have to cover themselves. Just think if the vet says "Oh, a bloody nose is no big deal. See if it goes away and call me tomorrow." and then something dreadful happened.
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Old October 19th, 2007, 12:28 AM
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Angry

i too am new here. i posted a question a few days ago about my cat.and yes you people are rude. not all of you are. i love animals but dont have enough money for vet bills. another thing getting animals fixed, if we all would get our animal fixed they would become extinct sooner or later. i think of my animals as my family(kids). would i want to get my kids fixed? noooo..
so people who think that go get yourself fixed...
  #16  
Old October 21st, 2007, 09:29 AM
clegge clegge is offline
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Post wanting to ask you a question my first time here

[QUOTE=MBRA518;32132]OK - people often get chewed out here for posting a problem (some warranted albeit - but some people just don't know what is serious and what is not).... so - when do you need to take a pet to the vet and when can you wait and see?

I'm a pretty experienced pet owner - so I'm probably more familiar with what's serious and what is not than many owners and I know there are many very experienced pet owners and rescue helpers on this board that will have some great advise also... so when does your pet need to go to the vet?

This is mostly from one of those dog shows on TLC but it is basically what I go by:

Throwing up is not abnormal for a dog - so you don't need to run to the vet every time your dog vomits UNLESS: it happens more than 3 times in 2 hours - or more than 6 times in 12 hours or there is blood in the vomit - if that is the case - go to the vet.

If there is blood in the poo or urine - or your pet has difficulty pooping or urinating - go to the vet

A cut or scrap on your pet should follow the same lines as for yourself - if the cut were on you - if you would clean and bandage it yourself - you can likely do that for your pet - however anything large enough to require stitches or if you can't QUICKLY stop the bleeding - go to the vet.

If your pet is hit by a car, or otherwise suffers a big trauma - go to the vet ASAP - even if it appears nothing is wrong, internal injuries sometimes can't be detected - especially if the animal is in shock

For physical soreness/lameness... if is bad enough that the animal will not/can not walk - go to the vet. For a mild limp - check the limb/area thoroughly for thorns, cuts overly tender spots, if any are found deal with them if you can - if you can't - off to the vet... if you can't determine what is wrong and it is MILD - give it a day, if no improvement go to the vet.

If your pet has an eye problem - eyes closed/can't open - puss, excess running of the eye or a foreign object in the eye that you can't easily remove (like a hair you can get out wouldn't be a big deal) Go to the vet - eyes are not to be messed with.

If your pet in suddenly sick or physically hurt with no explanation - go to the vet

If you are unsure what is mild enough of a problem to deal with yourself - discuss it with your vet - not the message board - most vets will speak to you on the phone or call you back if something is going on that you are not sure how to deal with.

You should also have an after hours number for your vet - be that an emergency on call service from you regular vet, or one in your area, if those are not available in your area - find out where the nearest emergency 24 hour clinic is and have that number near your phone as well.

I've heard it said that you should take your pet to the vet if it was something you would go to the doctor for... this is not always good reasoning - pets are not humans, something what is not that big of a deal for you can be deadly for your pet, and they can't tell you how much or were it hurts - people can. I know that I have taken my pets to the vet for things I wouldn't not have gone to the Dr for - but then I never go to the Dr other than reg visits unless I'm in real pain - that's my choice - I don't think it's fair to force that on my pets.

My female and i are going to the vet on mondat due to she is pregnant i think but she has a little dirarea and some discharge from other area watery/pinkish color she is eating a little as long as i feed it to her and she is really mopping around she is older so im wanting to know if there is something i can do for her untill i get her to the vets to make her feel better i have to clean her bacause it is hard for her to reach her behind any suggestions please
  #17  
Old January 3rd, 2008, 09:23 PM
Charlene Ousey Charlene Ousey is offline
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People who don't phone a vet

I live in a remote remote community. I have to travel 100kms for a vet and the phone call is long distant. The internet is free. My dog has been limping for the past couple of days. By the first post I read, it appears I should take her to the vet. However, not everyone has the luxury of even knowing a vet let alone access to one. Thus, posting online asking other pet lover's who have experience and access.
  #18  
Old January 29th, 2008, 11:23 AM
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Marilouwl Marilouwl is offline
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I can't talk for everyone else, but concerning me, even if a call ten vets, they will usually all tell me that they have to see the animal in question. Half of the time I went for nothing, wich is upsetting because of my money problems (as someone else said, though, I think my cats are better with me than in a shelter even if I couldn't afford a 1000$ visit for now). I wouldn't spend money on other things and when I'll be able to save some money, I will first do it for them.

So, in my case, when something is far from being an emergency but still bothers me a little, I'll make some research on the net, ask a few questions in forums and call a vet. With all these different sources of advice, I can sometimes take care myself of my pets!

My other point is that some little problems appears at night or during week-ends. I don't know, but I'm afraid of calling an emergency vet because my cat coughed three times in a day! By getting information on "is it the first signs of something that could endanger the health of my cat in the future?" here I feel that I'm actually doing something to help my cat until I call the vet.

My last point, people are anxious when their pets are sicks and they might be seeking for support. Even though I call the vet and see her with my sick babies, I'm more than happy when people here are also trying to help me. I found interresting tips on how to introduce a new cat in my home, on pregnancy and delivering, on kittens, on how to help a cat heal a cold only by starting one thread where I was worried about my Maya sneezing.

Finally, even if there are goods reasons to ask a health question here, a pet owner should always go to the vet during the next 24 hours four a little problem that didn't go away. I've learned how important it is to save money for our animals too. I lost Maya in less than three days: she stopped eating, I waited 48 hours instead of 24 before going to the vet because I was hoping she would start eating again. When I went there she needed to be hospitalized (1000$) and I couldn't afford it. I took her back home and she died less than a day after even with all my efforts to keep her alive, even with all the medical advice the vet had given me, even with all the support and tips I got on this forum.

Why? Because I couldn't afford to keep her alive, because I waited to long before going to the vet. Please, never make the same mistake as me. Go to the vet as soon as you find something unusual about your cat/dog/pet. This could save their life.
  #19  
Old May 6th, 2008, 04:27 PM
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woleary456 woleary456 is offline
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I work for an emergency hospital. On a daily basis I have people call and ask for advise and or ask how to treat at home.
Now here is the problem. I have had people call and describe a dying animal and when they arrive the pet is fine. On the flip side I have had people call and describe a healthy animal and then later call to tell me the pet passed away at home.
Now If I tell them the pet is fine, can wait till morning or how to treat at home and then the pet dies. We'll I have to live with that. I have been doing this for over 20 years and my first and primary concern is the pet. So my answer is always the same. See a veterinarian.
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