Emergency Veterinary Care 24 hours, 365 days a year.
VREC is a full service trauma and critical care facility.
What do you do if your pet becomes ill or is injured in the middle of the night?
The Veterinary Referral and Emergency Center (VREC) is ALWAYS available to help!
Since opening in May, 2010 our hospital is considered the premier veterinary emergency care facility in northeastern Pennsylvania. We provide emergency and critical care coverage for the surrounding communities, as well as Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. Our highly qualified emergency veterinarians have over 30 years of combined experience. They work side-by-side with a skilled staff of licensed veterinary technicians and veterinary assistants that excel in providing prompt, cutting-edge veterinary care to even the most critical patients while using the latest technological advances.
We are fully capable of managing a wide variety of emergency cases that may range from minor to life-threatening. Because we have earned the confidence and trust of the local veterinary community, we are frequently their first choice for after-hours emergency care. Our goal is to ensure that all pets receive compassionate, professional and quality emergency care whenever the need arises. Coupled with the expertise of our referral services’, Veterinary Referral and Emergency Center offers unsurpassed patient care any time, day or night!
We understand that our pets are like our children and it can be a very difficult time when your pet becomes ill or is injured; therefore, we do our best not only to care for your pet as if they were our own, but also to communicate with you every step of the way. We understand that being separated from a beloved pet can be traumatic for both of you. To best accommodate this special bond, we offer daily visiting hours. We also offer support and guidance at times when it is needed the most.
Frequently Asked Questions – Emergency Services
What can I expect when I arrive with my critically ill pet?
Just like a human emergency room, all phases of treatment are determined on a case-by-case basis. We understand how important it is to have a rapid response to extremely critical cases such as hit-by-car traumas. When you arrive, an emergency technician will meet you in the lobby, prepared to collect your pet for emergency triage, treatment and stabilization. This may include, but is not limited to: checking the patient’s temperature, pulse, respiration, assessing the level of consciousness (such as alert, depressed, comatose), obtaining blood samples and blood pressure measurements, placing an intravenous catheter, providing oxygen support (via oxygen mask or endotracheal tube), and administering intravenous fluid therapy, pain management, and CPCR (cardio-pulmonary-cerebral resuscitation).
We will then obtain information from you regarding your pet’s medical history, as well as the current injury/illness. This information will allow us to create a medical record where treatments and medications can be logged. It is highly recommended that you always maintain a record of your pet’s medical history in case of emergency.
Is there a veterinarian available overnight?
Our veterinarians and technicians work 24 hours a day in order to provide the best patient care possible. The doctors’ workstation – the “Bridge” – is centrally located, allowing for a panoramic view of the entire intensive care unit (ICU) area. This allows for careful observation of all hospitalized patients as well as timely changes in treatment protocols.
What’s the difference between my family veterinarian and a referral clinician?
Both your family veterinarian and a referral clinician have earned their Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree, which typically requires four years of undergraduate training and four years of veterinary school. A referral clinician must also complete an additional three to five years of internship and residency training, as well as passing a rigorous exam in order to become board certified.
Why would my pet need a referral clinician?
Your family veterinarian may refer you and your pet to our facility if your pet requires specific treatments or procedures that your family veterinarian does not offer. We offer surgical procedures in orthopedic, cardiovascular, and soft tissue surgeries. In fact VREC offers more surgical procedures than any other surgical service, outside of a large university teaching hospital. In addition, we are also available 24-hours for emergencies.
Can VREC be my pet’s regular veterinary hospital?
Our practice provides only referral, emergency and critical care. VREC works directly with your family veterinarian on a referral basis. By coordinating our professional care with your veterinarian’s primary health care we can provide your pet with the most comprehensive medical care possible.
How do I get a referral?
You do not need a referral for any of the services we offer. During regular office hours, your primary care veterinarian may refer you directly to VREC for emergency care if they are unable to see your pet in a timely manner, or if they feel that your pet requires a level of care beyond what they are able to provide. After hours, we are always ready and available to help.
What happens at the time of my pet’s initial referral visit?
We ask you to bring all relevant information from your family veterinarian concerning your pet’s current medical condition including x-rays, blood test results, and any medications that your pet may be taking. We will also have you fill out a brief medical history on your pet. You pet’s consultation will consist of a review of your pet’s medical history, an examination of your pet, and a discussion of your concerns regarding your pet’s medical condition. We will also provide you with an assessment of your pet’s treatment plans, options, and costs and discuss this assessment with you to agree on a treatment plan for your pet.
How will my family veterinarian be kept informed?
VREC works in a partnership with you and your family veterinarian to provide the most complete veterinary care possible. Your veterinarian will receive medical notes and results from your consultation and any procedures by fax, e-mail, or mail. You or your family veterinarian are encouraged to call us with any questions or concerns at any time.
When can I visit my pet?
Visiting your pet in the hospital can be arranged in most cases and must be agreed upon by you and the attending doctor. We ask that you limit your visitation at times, to keep from disrupting your pet’s treatment and recovery. Please understand that there may be a wait due to unexpected procedures or changes in patients’ conditions and allow yourself extra time when coming to visit your pet.
Can I leave personal belongings with my pet?
We do not recommend that you leave blankets or towels; such items may become soiled and may be misplaced during the daily laundering process. We have an ample supply of blankets and towels for your pet’s comfort. Toys and stuffed animals are permitted if adequately labeled. Food and water dishes are not necessary. If your pet requires a special diet, or if you prefer to bring your pet’s own food, please make sure to label all bags, cans, and containers.
At VREC we provide a wide range of services for every imaginable emergency. Based on our foundation of knowledge, advanced equipment and state-of-the-art facility, following is a partial list of our services:
- Arterial line placement and management
- Blood Product Transfusions
- Cardiac assessment
- Cardio-pulmonary-cerebral resuscitation (CPCR)
- Casting/splinting injured limbs
- Central venous pressure (CVP) monitoring
- Central-line placement and management
- Digital radiography
- Doppler blood pressure
- ECG telemetry
- Emergency stabilization
- Feeding tube placement and management (nasogastric, esophageal, PEG, etc.)
- Fluid therapy
- Gastric lavage
- Intravenous catheter placement
- Kidney diuresis
- Management of feline lower urinary tract disorder
- Management of toxicosis
- Oxygen therapy
- Pain management
- Parenteral and enteral nutrition
- Pulse oximetry monitoring
- Tracheal washes
- Urinary catheterization
- Vascular assessment
- Ventilation and ventilator management
Emergency Surgical Procedure
- Abscess repair
- Bite wound repair
- Bloat (GDV)
- Diaphragmatic hernia repair
- Exploratory abdominal surgeries
- Eye enucleations
- Gastrointestinal foreign body removal
- Laceration repairs
- Limb amputations