What Constitues an Emergency?

Emergencies and new patients are always welcome. If you have an emergency during regular office hours, please come directly to the hospital. If possible, please call us at

503-648-1643 while en route so we can best prepare for your pet’s emergency. This list is not all-inclusive and a veterinarian should be contacted for any questionable symptoms.

If your pet demonstrates any of these symptoms, please seek immediate medical attention. In case of after-hours emergencies, contact Dove Lewis Emergency Animal Hospital at 503-228-7281.

  • Straining or unable to urinate or defecate
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Any seizure-like episode
  • Panting or open-mouth breathing in cats
  • Any signs that may indicate heatstroke
  • A swollen, tense abdomen
  • Frequent and/or continued vomiting
  • Loss of appetite – cats if they have not eaten in 24 hours, and dogs if they have not eaten in 48 hours
  • Sudden lethargy
  • Any wound that is bleeding profusely or will not stop bleeding
  • Known or possible ingestion of a dangerous item, either objects or toxic substances

These symptoms can be considered urgent, and should be seen by a doctor within 24 hours:

  • An eye that is swollen, red, painful or has excessive discharge
  • A pain or limp that persists past 24 hours
  • Any wound with pus-like discharge, that is swollen and red, or that looks like it may require sutures
  • Vomiting or diarrhea that persists past 1-2 incidences
  • Any symptom that seems severe or unusual