Quick Advice

Vomiting and diarrhoea 

What should I do if my pet is vomiting or has diarrhoea?

  • Contact the practice for advice, as the causes can vary. 
  • Feed a bland diet, little and often. 
  • Supportive diets and probiotic supplements are also beneficial in aiding recovery, and can be purchased from the practice.
  • Allow access to water but avoid letting your pet drink a full bowl, as this can cause more vomiting.
  • Collect a faecal sample if told to do so – wear gloves and put the sample in a clean plastic box. 
  • Keep track of the consistency and quantity of diarrhoea and vomit, and check if there is blood present in faeces.
  • Get in touch with the practice if your pet’s condition isn’t improved by a bland diet. 

Limping and lameness

My pet is limping. What should I do?

  • Restrict exercise and allow rest for a few days, depending on how much your pet is limping.
  • Check for signs of broken bones.
  • If they are yelping or seem to be in pain, you should contact the practice.
  • Avoid slippery surfaces such as laminate flooring.
  • Contact the practice to book an appointment.
  • Limping and lameness can also be linked to age related conditions like osteoarthritis. Get in touch with the practice to learn more. 


Is it time to consider euthanasia?

  • Making the decision to put a pet to sleep is tough, but when the time comes it can be useful to prepare yourself for what the process involves.
  • You can be present for the procedure if you prefer.
  • A fur clipping is removed from the front and sometimes back legs, and a sedative can be given if the pet is nervous or stressed.
  • They are then given an anaesthetic agent, which helps them drift into unconsciousness and stops their heart.
  • Some pets may take a deep breath after the euthanasia, which is a bodily reflex.
  • Speak to the practice for further information.

Eating something they shouldn’t have eg. toxins or foreign objects

Has your pet ingested something they shouldn’t have?

  • Always contact the practice for advice as soon as possible.
  • Keep hold of any labels or packaging, as we may need to check any ingredients listed. 
  • Remove any other remaining toxins, foreign objects or dangers.


Is your pet whelping?

  • Contact the practice for advice if you think your pet is whelping.
  • Signs of labour in dogs and cats include stronger and more frequent abdominal cramps and contractions and their waters breaking.
  • Dystocia means a difficult or abnormal birth, and signs include contractions lasting for two hours without any signs of watery discharge.
  • To check for signs of whelping in dogs, you can take their temperature and look for discharge from the vulva.
  • There are three stages: the start of contractions, the birth of puppies and the delivery of the placenta.

Cuts and bite wounds

How to treat cuts, bites and wounds

  • Contact the practice for advice. 
  • The most appropriate treatment will depend on the severity and size of the wound.
  • Avoid removing any foreign bodies that may be inside the cut, as this can cause further trauma or bleeding. 
  • If the wound is dirty, you should ideally flush out the area with salt water.
  • Apply a pressure bandage.
  • Give your pet a salt water bath if appropriate.


Collapsed pet?

  • Contact the practice immediately.
  • Safely carry your pet to your car and use your boot parcel shelf as a stretcher.
  • Consider lifting the pet with someone else if they are a large dog breed.

Hit by a car 

What to do if your pet has been hit by a car

  • Check the area for any danger, and move your pet if the road is clear to go. 
  • Consider using your boot parcel shelf as a stretcher, but be careful not to move any limbs or the spine in case of fractures.
  • Position your pet so that they are lying on their stomach, as this can help with breathing.
  • Apply pressure to any wounds and consider applying pressure bandages using. available materials like scarves.
  • Contact the practice to inform them that you are on your way.
  • Visit the Blue Cross website for further information and first aid tips.


What to do when a pet has a seizure

  • Turn off any stimuli by turning off lights, TVs, radios etc.
  • Make sure your pet is in a safe area and away from objects that they might knock over during a seizure. 
  • Try not to move your pet and record the time the seizure started.
  • Contact the practice for advice.


What to do when a pet is struggling to breathe

  • Contact the practice immediately.
  • Try to keep your pet sat upright and avoid lying them on their side, as this can restrict breathing.
  • If safe to do so, check their airway for any obstructions or foreign bodies.

Allergic reactions 

Has your pet had an allergic reaction?

  • Contact the practice as soon as possible.
  • Record the time that the allergic reaction took place.


Is your pet bloated?

  • Bloating and unproductive vomiting in dogs can be signs of gastric dilation volvulus (GDV), which can occur in any dog breed, but is mainly found in deep chested breeds.
  • Bloating can also be a symptom of worms in cats. 
  • Contact the practice as soon as possible if you are concerned about bloating. 

Blocked bladder

Worried your pet might have a blocked bladder?

  • Blocked bladders in male cats strain and become painful, which often requires surgery. Contact the practice as soon as possible if you think your cat has a blocked bladder, as they will require emergency care. 
  • Blocked bladders can also be a symptom of a urinary tract infection (UTI), which is most common in cats. If this is the case, a urine sample will need to be taken.
  • If you think your cat may have a UTI, offer fresh water at all times. Cats often prefer water fountains to bowls.