COVID-19: When To Call The Vet

Posted In: Feline Health & Wellness, Canine Health & Wellness

Limiting the spread of the coronavirus is on everyone’s mind, and many people are correct to follow recommendations to stay home. But sometimes a trip to the veterinarian, or at least an initial phone call, is necessary:

Upper Respiratory Problems. If your pet is showing signs of an upper respiratory infection, give us a call. Symptoms are runny, watery eyes, lethargy, loss of appetite, sneezing, and coughing. While it may just seem like a cold, pets often require medication to treat the infection. And, upper respiratory infections are easily spread to other pets of the same species. So, you’ll want to keep an eye on your other pets too, and call us if they start showing signs.

Parasites. Most pets have parasites at some point in their lives. Whether they got parasites from ingesting a flea, or if they got parasites from spending time outdoors, pets need to be seen by vet if you notice ticks or worms. Not only do parasites cause intestinal distress, they can cause severe depletion of nutrients and other serious problems. And, some parasites are zoonotic, which means they could be passed on to you or other members of your household.

Breathing Problems. It goes without saying that breathing problems are serious and should be addressed by your veterinarian right away. There are many reasons that can cause a pet to have trouble breathing, including as obstruction, heart failure, or poisoning.

Open Wounds/Injuries. While you may be tempted to consult Dr. Google on what to do if your pet gets hurt, call us. This includes injuries to the eye, which can display as redness, squinting, pawing at the eye, and discharge. Bodily injuries may require prescription antibiotic treatment, sutures, or emergency surgery.

Pain. Pets can be really good at hiding pain. But, if you notice your pet limping, favoring a leg, wincing, shaking, hiding, growling, snapping, or just acting strangely, make an appointment for your pet to be seen.

Vomiting/Diarrhea. A phone call is a good start if your pet is vomiting or has diarrhea. For the first day or two, your veterinarian may recommend that you limit your pet’s food and to keep an eye on your pet. If it’s been longer than two days, a vet visit may be necessary in order to administer fluids, get diagnostic testing done, or get medication.

Seizures. It is scary watching your pet have a seizure, especially if you’ve never witnessed one before. Seizures can be the result of a genetic disorder, or they could be a signal of something serious like kidney disease, liver failure, poisoning, or a brain tumor. Call us right away if your pet has a seizure.

Urinary Problems. Infections of the urinary tract are common. Symptoms include urinating in inappropriate places (like outside of the litterbox for cats, or when housetrained dogs suddenly start having accidents inside), licking, vocalization, hiding, loss of appetite, or lethargy. These symptoms are all signs that you need to schedule an appointment with your veterinarian right away.

Uncomfortable Itching. If your pet is scratching a lot, he or she should be seen by the vet. It could be fleas or an allergic reaction, or it could be as serious as an infectious skin condition. No matter what the cause, there is no reason for your pet to suffer from uncomfortable itching.

Preventative Care. Vaccinations and preventative care are essential for your pet’s health and wellness. We strongly urge pet parents to not put off vaccinations, especially for kittens, puppies, and adult dogs. Not only do the vaccinations help protect pets from serious diseases, but preventative care during a wellness appointment can also keep pets parasite-free. With warmer temperatures approaching, you certainly don’t want to run out of your pet’s flea, tick, and heartworm preventatives.

When in doubt if you should make an appointment, give us a call. Our team is here to help! And if you'd like more information on virtual vet visits, curbside prescription pick up, or home delivery of pet medications, click here

The Animal Medical Center of Mid-America has veterinarians at three locations that can answer questions about your pet’s health. Call 314-951-1534 or click here to request an appointment online.