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Emergency Care

Buxmont Veterinary Hospital sees patients by appointment. Though we are equipped to see emergencies, the definition of "emergency" can vary from one pet owner to the next. If your pet shows up in critical condition, we will do our best to stabilize them until they can be transferred to a proper 24-hour emergency care facility.

If you believe your pet is experiencing an emergency during normal business hours, or are unsure what constitutes an emergency, CALL US FIRST. We can often fit in patients same-day during appointment hours. However, depending on the day, time, staffing, and seriousness of your pet's condition, we may need to direct you to one of the local ER hospitals. We do NOT have the ability to hospitalize patients overnight, perform emergency surgery, or offer on-call services at this time.

If it is after hours, call BluePearl Levittown (VSEC) at 215-750-7884. They are the closest emergency hospital to us that is currently open 24 hours
 and are located at 301 Veterans Highway, Levittown PA 19056.

The map below shows most of the emergency and referral hospitals in the area. Please note that not all of these hospitals are currently taking patients 24/7 and you should always call ahead when possible. Click on any of the flags to see the name of the hospital and be provided with a direct link to their website.
What you need to know about our ER hospitals:
There is a veterinary staffing shortage everywhere. This has forced many of our 24 hour hospitals to limit their hours and limit the amount of pets they can safely treat in any given time frame. When you arrive at any emergency hospital, your pet will be triaged and seen in the order of most to least critical. This means that the pets who are stable may have to wait until the staff has a break in dealing with the more critical cases, or they may recommend your pet wait to be seen by your primary care veterinarian.

Please understand that this is NOT because they don't care about your pet, but because they are busy dealing with pets that are more unstable than yours. In other words, you do NOT want to win the "triage game." If your pet is being taken back immediately, it means there is a very good chance he or she will not survive without intensive supportive care. This also means that more stable cases can be waiting anywhere from 30 minutes up to TEN HOURS.

Please, please, PLEASE consider getting PET INSURANCE before you need it. If you have to visit the ER with your pet, you will be provided with an estimate and required to put down a deposit before treatments can be started. The cost can be exuberant! You are often looking at a minimum of $300-$500 just for the initial triage and assessment by the doctor, and if your pet requires hospitalization and additional diagnostics, that amount can easily reach $5,000-$10,000 and go up from there. Most people do not have this kind of cash on hand and most hospitals do NOT offer payment plans. Many of them will take CareCredit and offer promotional deferred interest over set amounts. All of them take major credit cards.

Bottom line is that we want our pets to stay as happy and healthy as possible. Routine preventative care and following your veterinarian's recommendations (like keeping recheck appointments and finishing off all medications) can help minimize unexpected trips to the ER. Call your primary veterinarian at the first sign of ANY concern. They can advise whether this is something your pet needs to be seen for ASAP, or whether monitoring is appropriate until the next available appointment. Unfortunately, emergencies can and will happen. Being prepared in advance can help lessen the emotional and financial burden during a difficult time. And if you do find yourself in one of the emergency hospitals, remember to be patient and to be kind. Everyone who's in this field is in it because we love animals and want them to thrive. We're not getting rich off those expensive medications and pricey diagnostics, trust us!
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