Dog with stethescope

When you’re a pet parent, there’s nothing scarier than the thought of your furry friend getting sick. But because our dogs can’t talk to us, it can be hard to know when to bring Fido in for an urgent vet visit. At Sunrise Blvd Animal Hospital, we offer same-day appointments to get your dog the care he or she needs. If your dog shows any of these 4 signs of a medically urgent condition, call our veterinary team right away. 

1. Lethargy

Lethargy can be a sign of anything from anxiety or a mild illness to heat stroke or cancer. Call our veterinary team for a same-day appointment if your dog: 

  • Doesn’t want to get up and play with you, especially if she’s usually a ball of energy
  • Seems to respond more slowly to commands and other stimuli
  • Moves listlessly when he does manage to get up from his cozy bed

We’ll give your dog a full workup to figure out what’s going on.  

2. Stool Changes

Has your pup stopped going potty like usual? Is she straining to poop? Or maybe she’s experiencing diarrhea, black stools, or worms in her feces. It’s gross, we know, but changes in your dog’s poop—or poop schedule—can indicate that your dog needs veterinary care. Try to take a closer look at the feces, write down what you see, and call us for a same-day appointment.  

3. Vomiting

All dogs vomit at some point. It’s not always something to worry about. Sometimes they eat too much grass, sneak a snack that doesn’t agree with their tummy, or scarf their food down too quickly. In these cases, your dog might vomit once or twice within 15 minutes before going back to their favorite activities. 

But if your dog continues to vomit throughout the day or vomits blood, that’s a red flag. The same goes if your pup is suffering from diarrhea, sluggishness, or loss of appetite along with vomiting. Bring them in for a same-day appointment and we can perform advanced diagnostic testing to see what’s making your pet sick. 

4. Rapid Weight Loss or Gain

No matter how plump or thin your dog was before, bring them in for a vet visit if you notice a sudden or dramatic change in their weight. Chronic illnesses like Cushing’s disease and hypothyroidism can cause weight gain. Sudden weight loss can be a symptom of cancer, organ disease, parasite infection, and loss of appetite caused by a medical condition. 

Emergencies vs. Medical Urgencies

Some symptoms are signs of an emergency instead of a situation that requires urgent veterinary care. You should always take your dog to the nearest emergency veterinary hospital if they’ve experienced major trauma, such as being hit by a vehicle. This is true even if your dog gets up and walks around afterward. There could be internal bleeding, organ damage, broken bones, and other injuries that require emergency care. 

Other signs of an emergency include:

  • Seizures
  • Irregular or impaired breathing
  • Inability to stand
  • Excessive shaking, howling, or whining (signs of extreme pain)
  • Bleeding from the eyes, mouth, or nose
  • Unconsciousness

If you’re not sure whether a symptom requires urgent or emergency care, call (916) 726-2334 during our business hours or phone your nearest emergency veterinary hospital.