We’ve all been there or know a friend who has; that terrifying moment when you realise it could be life or death for your beloved pet. Your heart is racing, a million thoughts are running through your head, you panic because you don’t know what to do or who to call for help.

Whether it be a dog fight, car accident, snake bite, allergic reaction, the list goes on, emergencies happen when we least expect them and usually at the most inconvenient time. Being prepared and knowing someone is there to help can make the situation much more manageable.

The most common call that we receive after hours is for dogs that have eaten things that they shouldn’t.  I am sure we can all relate to this and often ‘Dr Google’ is our first port of call, while often helpful, it can also provide misleading information and so we would always recommend contacting an emergency vet service for advice.  Some common inappropriate ingestions that require urgent treatment are:

Snail bait –can be life threatening within hours and causes seizures, tremors and gastrointestinal signs

Onions and garlic – causes severe damage to red blood cells resulting in anaemia and gastrointestinal upset

Chocolate or caffeine – causes changes to heart rate and rhythm that can be deadly as well as severe gastrointestinal upset

Rat Bait – no immediate signs but causes bleeding anywhere from 3 days to 2 weeks after ingestion that can lead to life threatening consequences.  It is imperative to seek treatment early if you dog has ingested rat bait even if they ‘look’ ok from the outside.

To help you be prepared for emergencies should they happen, Barossa Vet Service is pleased to announce that we will be running a Pet First Aid workshop in November. The aim is to provide basic information about dealing with common emergencies and create confidence in you as an owner, at providing initial first aid prior to arrival at a veterinary care facility.  To register your interest please call 8562 1162.

Barossa Vet Service is proud to announce our return to offering an emergency after hours service to the Barossa Valley and surrounds as well as the Mid North.  We have a vet on call every night of the week and over weekend and public holidays.  We are happy to assist with urgent enquiries and manage emergencies outside of normal business hours. At Barossa Vet we understand how stressful this time can be and are committed to providing a local source of empathetic and timely emergency care for your pet.

Want to know more ? After some advice? You can reach Catherine via info@barossavetservice.com.au or visit the website for more information.

Catherine Harper of Barossa & Kapunda Veterinary Clinic