Importance of Contacting Your Vet Before Transporting an Injured Pet

November 23, 2016
American Veterinarian Editorial Staff

Elke Rudloff, DVM, DACVECC, clinical specialist and residency trauma supervisor at Lakeshore Veterinary Specialists, explains the importance of pet owners contacting their veterinarian before transporting an injured pet.

Elke Rudloff, DVM, DACVECC, clinical specialist and residency trauma supervisor at Lakeshore Veterinary Specialists, explains the importance of pet owners contacting their veterinarian before transporting an injured pet.

Interview Transcript (slightly modified for readability)

“I’ve seen a number of cases that have suffered trauma and a lot of different stories, but one particular story comes out to me that I wish we may have been able to talk to the client before they came in. Part of the preparation of dealing with the trauma situation is knowing where to go, first of all, and knowing the quickest way to get there, and then calling and knowing the numbers of the emergency clinics or your own veterinarian, so that you can call and let them know that you’re on your way, so they know what they might be dealing with and how to intervene.

I [once] had a client who was in the park with his three dogs and they were playing catch with a racquetball and one of his dogs caught the racquetball and he actually inhaled it into the back of his throat and he started choking on it. He ended up bringing the dog in, but he brought the dog in with all of his other dogs. He had him walk to the car with the other dogs, put them in the back of a pickup truck, and then drove in, and by the time that he got in there, the dog stopped breathing. We were able to save the dog. We rapidly removed the ball with a special type of force up and then put an airway tube and started breathing for the dog and it was recovered, but what might have happened had he called us on the phone first, was we might have guided him on the way to do the Heimlich-like maneuver, to maybe try to dislodge the ball before he ever got into the car, because that might have saved the dog some oxygen deprivation during the transport.”