When Should a Limping Pet Seek Emergency Care?

Your pet’s lameness can usually wait until the next business day for veterinary care. However, certain conditions, plus limping, mean you need to head to your nearest emergency veterinary hospital right away.


Lameness signs in pets that require emergency care.

Visit the emergency room if your canine companion displays any of the following symptoms:

  • Dragging a limb
  • Extreme lethargy
  • Not bearing weight on a limb
  • Bleeding that cannot be stopped
  • Excessive swelling
  • Excessive vocalization
  • Suddenly getting worse

Your pet may need urgent care for an underlying condition, not just for the limp, if they exhibit slight lameness along with unsettling symptoms like vomiting or diarrhea.

Lameness causes in pets that require emergency care

For a variety of reasons, pets can fall lame, some of which require rapid medical attention. Despite the fact that a muscular sprain or strain is alarming, you do not need to head straight to the local emergency room. The following conditions, however, do necessitate urgent care:

  • A limb fracture
  • Paralysis of one or more limbs, often known as paresis
  • Unstoppable bleeding from a severe or significant wound
  • The bite of a poisonous snake or bug
  • A car accident
  • A dogfight

Despite the fact that some of these circumstances may not seem to cause much harm, they could still lead to internal problems that need to be treated. For instance, you might believe that your pet, who was hit by a car, is fine if all they have is a little road rash on their legs and a slight limp, but a thorough examination might discover damage to their liver, spleen, kidneys, or bladder, necessitating severe hospitalization.

A pet that has been bitten by another animal is another scenario where emergency care is necessary. Small holes are all that is left after a puncture, yet the wounds spread infection very quickly. In addition, a pet that grabs and shakes your pet might seriously harm the underlying tissues, which can quickly worsen.

It can be challenging to decide whether your three-legged pet, formerly a four-legged pal, needs emergency care. Give our staff a call to discuss your pet’s condition so we can let you know whether they require emergency care.