What To Expect When Your Pet Is Hospitalized

When Your Pet is Hospitalized

At Guardian Veterinary Specialists, we understand how stressful a hospital stay can be for animals and their humans (we’re pet owners too!). That’s why we strive to make your pet’s stay with us as comfortable and soothing as possible—and alleviate any concerns you may have.

To help you know what to expect if your pet needs to be hospitalized here’s some helpful information:

Before Your Pet’s Appointment

  • Ask your primary care veterinarian to send us your pet’s medical record. This will help facilitate a proper diagnosis and effective treatment plan.
  • On the day of your pet’s appointment, you will receive a message from us with instructions on how to check in via text.
  • Please bring personal identification with you (such as your driver’s license) to ensure our registration records are accurate.
  • We know you’ll make every effort to arrive on time, but if you’re running late, please call us at 914-704-3400.

When You and Your Pet Arrive

  • For safety’s sake, keep your pet on a leash or in a secure carrier.
  • To reduce stress, we have separate waiting rooms for dogs and cats.
  • To enable staff to focus solely on your pet’s medical needs, we may ask that you allow us to perform our initial examination without you being present.
  • We’re unable to store or take responsibility for personal belongings such as leashes, carriers, beds, etc., so please take these items with you when you leave.

Visiting Your Pet in the Hospital

Visiting can be important for you and your pet during a hospital stay. Some pets, however, may become distressed at seeing their owners, so please keep this in mind when thinking about whether to visit.

It’s best not to visit right after a procedure and during recovery from anesthesia since this can be a confusing and disorienting time for pet patients. We’ll be happy to speak with you on the phone to give you updates during your pet’s recovery period.

Please call ahead to let us know if you’ll be visiting so we can confirm with the doctor that it’s medically appropriate. Visitors to the ICU must be accompanied by a staff member. Minors must be accompanied by an adult.

To make your visit as comfortable and reassuring as possible for your pet, we have a private, comfortable room where you can spend quality time together. If you have any questions about visiting your pet, please don’t hesitate to call us and we’ll do our best to accommodate your needs.

During Your Pet’s Hospital Stay

During a hospital stay, your pet will be monitored around the clock by our support staff of licensed veterinary technicians and veterinary assistants. During regular business hours, a full complement of specialty and emergency veterinarians are present. And because we’re a 24/7 emergency and critical care hospital, a highly trained emergency veterinarian and support staff are always here during off hours.

Patient examinations and rounds (when staff doctors collaborate on your pet’s health status) occur throughout the day. Our specialists and emergency doctors confer across disciplines and update each other every day on your pet’s progress and treatment plan.

To help reduce patient anxiety, we have separate inpatient hospital wards for dogs and cats.

The veterinarian in charge of your pet’s care will contact you with an update by 12:00 noon after morning rounds have been completed. A licensed veterinary technician on your pet’s care team will update you if the doctor is unavailable. After this initial phone call, you may call throughout the day for status checks. We’ll contact you immediately if there’s any change in your pet’s condition at any time.

Our veterinarians will communicate with your primary care veterinarian to discuss your pet’s condition and ongoing treatment plan. Copies of your pet’s medical record will be made available to your primary care veterinarian to help ensure a seamless transition and the best ongoing care.

We’ll keep you informed of hospital costs and provide detailed written instructions on home care following hospital discharge. A doctor or technician will review the instructions with you to make sure you’re comfortable managing your pet’s care at home.