Emergency and critical care is the field of medicine that addresses time-sensitive and life-threatening medical issues for dogs and cats. While not all patients require immediate ECC evaluation and are stable enough to wait for scheduled assessment with a non-emergent specialist or general practitioner, if you have concerns about your pet, you are welcome to call the OSU ECC service to discuss evaluation. Depending on the assessment, your pet may receive recommendations for home care, follow up evaluation, or hospitalization.

Owners know their pets best. Owners are often the first to notice changes in their pets’ behavior or appearance. If you observe any significant changes that concern you, it’s advisable to have a veterinarian examine your pet. You can call us to discuss your concerns.

Yes. However, if your veterinarian is currently treating your dog or cat, it’s best to discuss a referral so the OSU Emergency team can provide the most appropriate care. We recommend that your veterinarian call us to arrange a smooth transfer of care. Please note that the OSU ECC service currently does not accommodate walk-ins, and all patients requesting care need a scheduled appointment.


Please bring a list of all medications your pet is taking and any suspected toxins your pet may have ingested. If your dog or cat has recently visited a veterinarian, bring  along any medical records and x-rays, if available. Personal belongings are not permitted within the ICU due to challenges in ensuring appropriate sanitization if they become soiled.


An emergency veterinarian (intern, resident, and/or faculty member) and a senior veterinary student will examine your pet. Students are involved in all aspects of patient care under the supervision of veterinarians. Our emergency team will triage all incoming patients to determine medical needs, with priority given to patients in life-threatening situations, regardless of arrival time.

Upon arrival at the emergency hospital, all pets will be triaged by our student and technical staff. This involves assigning a medical priority based on vital signs and a brief history. Similar to a human ER, this ensures that the most critically ill patients receive priority care. A technician and/or student will meet you in the lobby to obtain your pet’s vital signs. If your pet’s vital signs are abnormal or your pet is clearly unstable, your pet will be immediately taken to the back for examination by a doctor. A student will then obtain vital historical information while your pet is stabilized. You may be asked to sign a permission form for emergency treatment at this time. The attending clinician will consult with you and present a diagnostic and therapeutic plan as soon as possible. If your pet is stable upon admission, you will be escorted to an examination room where a veterinary student will obtain pertinent historical information and perform a physical examination. This information will then be presented to the attending clinician. Shortly afterward, the attending clinician will perform a thorough physical examination on your pet, consult with you, and present a diagnostic and therapeutic plan. If your pet’s problems are complex, specialists may be consulted, and transfer to another specialty service may be recommended.

The veterinarian overseeing on your pet’s case will schedule appointments to call you with updates at mutually convenient times, usually once or twice a day, depending on your pet’s condition. In case of a sudden change in your pet’s condition, we will call you immediately.

Our prices are comparable to the prevailing costs in the region for similar levels of care. Costs depend on the individual needs of the patient. After your pet has been evaluated, we will provide a written cost estimate and discuss these charges with you. We require a deposit of 50% of the high end of the estimated costs to proceed with treatments and hospitalized care. Payment is due at time of service, and we support CareCredit for those requiring payment plans

If hospitalization is recommended for your pet we offer several levels of care tailored to their needs. Certified veterinary technicians staff our intensive care unit and oversee all hospital wards 24 hours a day. Visiting is encouraged with prior scheduling and arrangement through the veterinarian primarily managing your pet’s care and pending ICU patient case load.

Visiting hours for hospitalized pets vary based on the patient's condition and ICU treatment schedule. We encourage you to schedule visits with the veterinarian primarily managing your pet's care to ensure that your visit is coordinated with the patient's treatment plan and the ICU patient case load.

We understand the comfort that familiar items can provide to pets. However, due to sanitation reasons, personal belongings are not permitted within the ICU. Please discuss any specific comfort items with the veterinary team managing your pet's care.

Pets in our hospital are monitored regularly, with the frequency of monitoring depending on their condition. Our certified veterinary technicians and veterinarians oversee all hospitalized patients  24 hours a day to ensure that patients receive the care and attention they need.

Pets that are hospitalized will receive appropriate nutrition based on their condition and treatment plan. Our veterinary team will discuss the feeding plan for your pet and any dietary restrictions or requirements they may have.

If there is a sudden change in your pet's condition or if they deteriorate while hospitalized, our veterinary team will immediately assess the situation and provide necessary interventions. We will also communicate with you promptly to discuss any changes in your pet's condition and the recommended course of action.

You can reach the OSU Emergency and Critical Care service during regular business hours by contacting the small animal reception at the hospital directly. After hours, your call will be directed to the answering service, who will then connect you with the veterinarian on duty overseeing your pet's care.