services overviewDenton County Animal Emergency Room is a fully equipped, state-of-the-art veterinary ER that offers compassionate emergency care for both you and your pet. We perform a wide range of diagnostics, surgical procedures and emergency critical care when your primary care veterinarian is unavailable. DCAER is equipped with two trauma rooms (one of which houses our digital radiography equipment), an extensive in-house laboratory, ultrasound capability, multiple Snyder ICU and neonatal ICU units for oxygen support, video monitoring of all patients, a private visitation room, two quiet room hospitalization wards for patients needing a less noisy environment, a low recovery area for large to giant-sized breeds recovering from surgery, a back-up generator for any power outages, and separate exam rooms and isolation wards for treatment of potentially infectious patients.

At DCAER, we understand that a medical emergency can be a frightening experience for you and your family. Our goal is to provide your pet with the best medical care and make this experience as easy for you as possible. All of the hospital staff members are pet owners themselves, so we understand the love you have for your pet. Each pet seen at the hospital receives exceptionally compassionate emergency veterinary care and attention from the time he or she comes into the hospital until the time he or she leaves.

Triage Policy

If you are experiencing a medical emergency with your pet, no appointment is necessary. Call our hospital to let us know you are on your way or head directly to DCAER if the emergency occurs during our business hours. When you and your pet arrive at our hospital, the attending veterinarian will perform a thorough examination of your pet. After the examination, we'll update you on your pet's medical condition. While some pets can be treated and released the same day, others must be admitted to the hospital for close monitoring and life support measures. Whether your pet has a minor or major medical problem, we'll provide your pet with quality, caring emergency treatment. We are devoted to providing a compassionate environment that treats pets and people with dignity, kindness and respect.

We make every effort to see all patients in a timely manner, but patients with the most ctitical and life-threatening conditions must be given a priority. While this may mean that during busy times some patients whose conditions are not life-threatening may need to wait a period of time, we want you to be assured that if your pet ever comes in with such a life-threatening condition, you will be given the same priority. If we anticipate an extended wait, we will do our best to keep you informed of the situation. We appreciate your patience and understanding. Our emergency veterinarians are committed to giving each patient and owner the time necessary for proper diagnosis and treatment, as well as a thorough explanation. When it is your turn, you and your pet will receive the same time and consideration.

Visitation and Hospitalization

Visitation is allowed at the doctor's discretion and typically only if your pet can be transported to our Visitation Room. For certain patients hospitalized for extended periods of time, owners are encouraged to visit their pets. But please keep in mind that treatment of incoming cases takes precedence over any visitation. We will do everything we can to accomodate owner visits, however, there are occasionally times when there may be a wait before you are able to visit. Please understand that our patients are our priority. When visiting your pet, please be respectful of our other patients. We are not able to discuss other hospitalized patients with you.

While your pet is hospitalized at DCAER, you are always welcome to call and check up on your pet's condition at any time. Please limit your phone calls to once every 6-8 hours as each owner update takes us away from our hospitalized patients and their care. We will make every effort to contact you in the event that there has been a change in your pet's status that requires further diagnostics and discussion.

We offer a clean, comfortable environment based on your pet's needs, which includes ample padding and bedding. For this reason, and due to the volume of patients seen, we ask that you not leave any blankets, or towels or toys for your pet. If any personal items are left, we cannot guarantee their return.

Our clinic provides a place for your animal during the hours when your primary veterinary hospital is closed. We require that you pick up your pet by 7 a.m. to be transferred back to your primary veterinarian for continued observation and/or diagnostics. Our facility closes at 8 a.m. Any animals not picked up by 8 a.m. will be assessed a late fee.

Common ER Visit Questions

consultation examWhy am I not allowed to be with my pet at all times?

In order to quickly assess each patient and determine stability, monitor any changes in the status of your pet, decrease wait times and provide a safe work environment, we do all examinations, diagnostics, treatments and surgery in our treatment area without the client being present. Emergency cases can be very traumatic for clients to see and having clients in the treatment area would inhibit patient care for all our patients. We are a very busy practice with cases that often come in unexpectedly, and there is simply not enough room to have every client sit with their pet while we treat them. If your animal is stable, and you would like to wait with your pet in an exam room, please inform the technician and we will have you wait there until a doctor is available. This can increase your wait time at our hospital, but we will do our very best to treat your pet as quickly as possible.

Why are there longer wait times at an emergency hospital?

Just like a human emergency room, we do not take appointments. This means that many patients can arrive all at once and that can cause delays in the treatment of stable patients when critical animals come through the door and require immediate life-saving care. Each patient is triaged as they arrive and although we try to treat each patient on a first-come, first-served basis, this is not always feasible when a less stable patient arrives at the hospital.

Why is someone else's pet being seen before mine?

All pet's are triaged to see which patients are more critical than others. If another patient has been moved ahead of your pet, that patient has been found to be less stable than your animal and may require life-saving efforts.

Why does everything seem to cost more at an emergency hospital?

An emergency hospital is very expensive to maintain. The hospital must be fully staffed with emergency trained veterinarians and technicians, whether two patients come through the door or twenty. Maintaining this state of readiness and a state-of-the-art hospital with the latest equipment to treat every possible emergency that comes through the door is very costly. We do our best to offer affordable emergency services but emergency care is typically going to be more expensive than your primary veterinarian for these reasons.

This hospital is not government owned or subsidized (like county hospitals). We are a private business. We must charge for the services and care that we provide in order to stay in business and provide care for all our patients that need us.