St Andrews (01334) 466800  –  Ladybank (01337) 832600  –  Newport-on-Tay (01382) 543487

Out-of-Hours Emergency Service with Vets now call on 01592 328336

Abscesses   These appear either as a soft swelling or already burst and producing a variety of creamy to blood-stained discharges, which matt and dry in the coat to produce a scab. These usually start as a puncture wound (especially from cat fights); from penetrating foreign bodies such as splinters or grass seeds; or on the face from tooth infections. Unless the animal is significantly distressed, these will usually not be true emergencies. If the abscess has burst, initial care should be simply bathing the affected area with cooled boiled water. Disinfectants may be irritating and should be avoided (especially in cats). Try to encourage any remaining contents to drain from the abscess. Be aware that the area may be sore and do not attempt to clean the wound if your animal is trying to bite or scratch you. Make an appointment with your clinic to get the wound assessed.

Bloat   Known properly as GDV (Gastric Dilation/Volvulus). This is a true emergency which occurs infrequently, but more commonly in certain deep-chested breeds of dogs (German Shepherds, Setters, Great Danes and Dachshunds, amongst others). It classically occurs after dogs rapidly eat a carbohydrate-rich meal and is often associated with exercising soon after such a meal.  The stomach becomes rapidly over-inflated with gas produced by fermentation within the stomach. Unfortunately there is not really much you can do at home with this one, except phone the vet and ask to be seen as soon as possible.

Burns and Scalds   Burns occur from direct contact with heat or due to electrical contact; scalds are from contact with hot liquids. The most important thing with all heat injuries is to safely remove the animal from the heat source and then cool the area as rapidly as possible. This is especially so with oil from chip pans and similar. Be aware of your own safety – the animal will be in pain, and also be aware of electrical hazards before throwing around large volumes of cold water. If the burn area is large; the animal is in significant pain; or the burn is close the the eyes, mouth, etc. then contact the duty vet and ask to be seen as soon as possible.

St Andrews (01334) 466800 – Ladybank (01337) 832600 – Newport on Tay (01382) 543487

Out-of-Hours Emergency Service – 07872 817599