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Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital (MVRH)

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Emergency/Critical Care

Our Emergency and Critical Care team is on site 24 hours per day, 365 days per year.

Mass Vet is a certified Level I veterinary emergency and critical care facility.  Hospitals certified as Level 1 by the Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society (VECCS) must meet strict requirements for staffing, equipment, and medical expertise.

Patients are never left unattended in our ICU; you can rest assured that as your pet recovers, he or she will be cared for at all times.

What to do in an Emergency


We are open on holidays and weekends.

What to Do if You Suspect Your Pet Has Eaten Something Toxic


Gather up any packaging or remains of anything that was eaten or suspected as having been eaten! This step will help speed up the diagnosis. Please don’t be shy; if it was marijuana or any other embarrassing (or illicit) product, please be honest with our team about it; it will speed up diagnosis and treatment.

HELP! My Pet Ate Something!

The team in our emergency and critical care department work with other specialists and your primary care veterinarian to provide the comprehensive care your pet needs.

Our emergency veterinarians and critical care specialists have extensive training in a complete range of emergency and critical care services and are supported by a team of experienced veterinary technicians.

Our emergency and critical care veterinarians are highly specialized in the treatment of patients who have sustained trauma, are critically ill, and require intensive, critical care. We also treat minor emergencies and provide care for patients in need of medical attention when your family vet is not available. Our team is always available, day or night.

Your family veterinarian may refer you to an emergency or critical care doctor for diagnosis and ongoing support of many conditions, including, but not limited to:


  • Radiography (X-Rays)

  • Ultrasound

  • CT-Scan

  • MRI

Emergency Services

  • Comprehensive Emergency Medical Exam

  • Surgical Services through Emergency/Critical Care

  • Hemodialysis & Therapeutic Plasma Exchange

  • Acute pain

  • Continuous EKG monitoring

  • Dystocia management (difficulty giving birth)

  • Full cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) including defibrillation

  • Immune-related diseases

  • Infectious diseases

  • Kidney and liver disease

  • Neurologic problems

  • Peritonitis

  • Pneumonia and lung disease

  • Severe pancreatitis

  • Severe gastrointestinal emergencies (bloat)

  • Sepsis management

  • Seizure management

  • Toxicosis or poisonings

  • Trauma

  • Trouble breathing

  • Trouble walking

  • Trouble urinating

Helpful Links

  • Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society

  • American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care


We recommend that you keep a pet-specific first aid kit in your car as a best practice, just as you would a human-first aid kit.  Click the link for a printable PDF. Keep the print out in your kit for when you need to restock.

First Aid Kit Checklist

  • Pet Backpack or lunchbox

    • Place all the following items inside and remember to restock

  • Phone Numbers:

    • Your regular veterinarian, the closest emergency room, and Poison Control; (888) 426-4435

  • A spare leash

  • Self-cling bandage

  • Muzzle

  • Gauze pads

  • Gauze

  • Bandage tape

  • Ice pack

  • Cotton balls

  • Scissors

  • Saline solution

  • Tweezers

  • Rectal thermometer

  • Disposable gloves

  • Blanket

  • Diphenhydramine (Benadryl)

    • (If approved by a veterinarian)

  • Styptic powder (Kwik Stop)

  • Nail clippers

  • Flashlight

  • Rubbing alcohol

    • (To clean the thermometer)

  • Your pet's paperwork

    • Rabies certificate, Important Medical Records

The VECCS Logo that reads: Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care Society / Certified Facility / Level 1 Facility / Raising the Level of Patient Care"

Level One Emergency and Critical Care Facility

Mass Vet is recognized as a certified Level One Emergency and Critical Care Facility by the Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care Society (VECCS), indicating the highest level of Emergency and Critical Care (ECC) patient care, based on specialist and technician staffing, emergency capabilities, equipment and instrument availability, in-patient support capabilities, continuing education programs, and facilities.

Meet Our Emergency and Critical Care Team