After Hours Emergency

We provide you and your pets with an after-hours emergency service for critical illness or injury. We hope your pet never needs us for an emergency however, common emergencies relate to car accidents, heart conditions, poisoning and a range of injuries.

Upon arrival, your pet will be assessed by one of our veterinarians. We will aim to provide an estimate of the costs involved with your case, however, please be aware that with emergency procedures costs can vary depending on what services and treatments are required. Our veterinarians will keep you updated regularly during the course of your pet’s stay in hospital.

For emergencies, please call

02 6372 6780

Located at 138 Church Street, Mudgee, NSW 2850

10 Signs Your Pet Needs Emergency Treatment

Dog bite wounds, lacerations, falls from height and motor vehicle injuries are common emergency presentations for small animal pets that require prompt and comprehensive assessment for optimal injury resolution. Dogs and cats are vulnerable to blood loss and pain. In addition, internal injuries may not be apparent at the time of an incident and a veterinary check can help to ascertain the extent of an injury.
Coughing, panting excessively, exaggerated breathing movements and noisy breathing are abnormal and warrant emergency care. Short faced (bracycephalic) dog breeds are particularly vulnerable to breathing concerns which are exacerbated by strenuous activity and heat. Oxygen supplementation, cooling, sedation and chest radiographs can help to manage and diagnose breathing problems so that treatment can be commenced.
Significant blood loss can occur and the source may need to be identified and damage repaired (surgical wound closure is commonly required for bleeding wounds and abdominal surgery to remove or resolve an internal bleed. Older dogs are vulnerable to ruptured bleeding tumours of the spleen, kidney and adrenal gland. Sudden bloating, collapse and pale gum colour are often the very first signs of a bleeding tumour.
Vomiting is abnormal for dogs and cats. Vomiting may indicate that there is an inflammatory disease of the gastrointestinal tract which can lead to dehydration and severe electrolyte derangements. Some dogs show signs of vomiting if they have eaten something that causes a blockage of the intestinal tract, constipation, toxin ingestion, dietary indiscretion event or a gastric torsion (bloat). Many causes are correctable if treated and diagnosed in a timely manner.

Common toxins encountered by pets include:

  • Chocolate and caffeine containing products
  • Grapes and raising
  • Lilies – cat specific
  • Human medications including Nurofen, Panadol, codeine, cardiac medications, asthma medications
  • Party drugs
  • Insecticides, herbicides, snail pellets, round up
  • Some varieties of mushrooms and compost ingredients may be toxic
  • Batteries can be extremely dangerous for dogs to swallow
Pain can present in many ways in our pets. Cats often become quiet, inactive and distressed or aggressive when handled. Squatting and vocalising when attempting to toilet may suggest a painful urinary tract obstruction. Dogs may adapt a prayer posture or hunched back, unsettled or inactive behaviours, atypical aggression, vocalising, crying and lack of appetite are common signs. Brain and neck injuries often result in a dog refusing to bend their neck to get to a food bowl or reluctance to sit or lie down. They may pace or wander in circles to avoid painful movement when trying to cope with a neck injury.
An unconscious animal that does not respond to their name or gentle patting is an emergency. Animals may collapse to the ground if they are weak from a heart problem, internal bleeding, neurological problem or respiratory disease. Immediate veterinary attention is warranted. If a large dog is unable to be lifted, a towel or blanket on the floor can be used to roll them onto and create a sling such that your pet can be bought to a veterinary clinic for emergency care.
Abnormal gait and loss of back leg control or sudden inability to walk can be features of common spinal injuries in dogs or cats including disk disease and trauma. Some toxins and disease processes can also cause weakness most commonly affecting the back legs and potentially affecting a patient’s ability and control of urination. These conditions are always an emergency and require sound veterinary assessment and diagnostic and treatment options.
Seizures in a dog usually involve a period of behaviour change followed by focal and whole body collapse and paddling spasmodic limb movements. A seizure is a serious concern and pets may behave differently or aggressively following a seizure and require careful care to manage in the event of a seizure. Many toxins can result in twitches and tremors that always need veterinary attention and can progress to full seizures and even brain injury, coma and death if not treated.
Hot cars are always dangerous to pets and they should never be left in a hot care for any length of time. Overheating can occur due to airway obstruction (choke) and breathing problems especially laryngeal paralysis. Heat stress complications can include severe bloody diarrhoea, vomiting, dehydration, heart muscle damage, spontaneous bleeding, seizures, brain injury, breathing problems and death. Urgent treatment and immediate vet advice should be sought.

Download our first aid app


Would you know what to do if your pet stopped breathing or suffered a fracture? In an emergency situation, effective first aid can minimise injury and even save lives. Knowing what to do makes all the difference.

Clients of Church Street Veterinary Hospital can now get the first aid information they need from a free mobile app: First Aid for Pets Australia. The app features first aid tips for over 130 conditions that affect cats and dogs, from toxins to trauma and medical emergencies. For each condition, a simple, step-by-step guide to first aid is provided. You can find additional information on causes, clinical signs and treatments.

First Aid for Pets Australia was written by Australian veterinarians, so the information is up to date, user-friendly and relevant to Australian pets.

Don’t wait for an emergency. Download the free app now so that you are prepared when it counts. You can find the app through the iTunes app store, or through the Google Play store.

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