Are You Prepared for Pet Emergencies?

Introducing a new regular column by vet Stewart Halperin

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This month we are introducing a new column by Stewart Halperin, founder and head vet at six Petcare Clinics, including popular local clinics in Goldhawk Road and Brook Green.

Stewart will be sharing news, views and expert advice for local animal lovers.

In his first column, he offers tips on first aid for your pet. He says: " I hope you never experience an emergency situation, but it's always helpful to be prepared.

"Here is some basic information on pet first aid that may help you while you wait for veterinary attention."


For larger wounds, keep the animal as quiet and still as possible and apply pressure to the wound to help stop blood being lost. Bandage using a clean towel, piece of clothing or bandage material. The bandage should be firm but not too tight.

Do not try to remove any foreign object from the wound as this can sometimes make bleeding worse.

Bite wounds often get very infected as the teeth harbour a lot of bacteria and these get implanted into the tissue around the bite. We often need to give antibiotics for these

Don’t give food or water as your pet may need an anaesthetic to repair the wound and this requires an empty stomach.

Breathing problems

If your pet is experiencing breathing difficulties, , if necessary open up your pet’s airway by pulling the tongue forward out of he mouth until it is flat. Check the throat to see if there are any objects blocking the airway. Breathing problems can be caused by obstructions, asthma (in cats) overheating and chest issues.


Try to determine what and how much your pet swallowed, as this is very useful for us in choosing the right treatment and antidotes. Here are some examples of substances that are toxic to pets if ingested.

  • Chocolate (especially dark chocolate)

  • raisins / grapes / onions

  • Ibuprofen / paracetamol

  • Anti freeze / rat poison / slug pellets

  • Lillies / holly, yew and mistletoe berries

Remember, don’t delay in calling Goldhawk Road Vets on 0208 743 3510 for veterinary help, even if its just phone advice.


August 2, 2013