The Vet Centre Glasgow's home page
  • Call our surgery0141 339 1228

First Aid

It’s always good to be prepared for an emergency

It’s always good to be prepared for an emergency. Here you can find a few pointers to help you care for your pet in an emergency situation until veterinary care is obtained.

Remember, if you are unable to come straight into the practice with your pet, you can call us for immediate advice over the phone.

  • Cuts
  • Stings
  • Eyes
  • Ears
  • Seizures & Fits
  • Heat Stroke


The best thing to do is seek immediate veterinary advice, but in the meantime it is vital to prevent blood loss.

  • Gently clean the wound with lukewarm water. If it is only a slight graze, clean regularly and monitor.
  • If the wound is bleeding, place a clean cloth, cotton wool or bandage over the wound and apply pressure, either with your hands, or by tying a bandage around the area. Never use an elastic band or constricting material, as this may cut off the blood supply.
  • It is important that you stop your pet from licking any wound, as this can cause infection and further damage to the injury.
  • If the wound is getting worse or your pet becomes unwell, please call us immediately. Remember, phone advice is free, so do not hesitate to call us if you have any questions or concerns.


Bees and wasps stings are incredibly common during the summer months in Glasgow. If they are stung, our pets are often very good at letting us know by crying and drawing attention to the area.

If you suspect your pet has been stung, the first thing to do is check to see if the sting is still present and, remove it, if possible. If the sting is present it is likely to be a bee sting. When the sting is not present, this is a good indication of a wasp sting.

For bee stings – Mix a small amount of water with some bicarbonate soda to make a paste, and apply to affected area.

For wasp stings – Make a solution of half vinegar and half water and use it to bathe the area. Bathing the sting may help ease discomfort.

Some animals have potentially fatal shock reactions to bee and wasp stings. If you feel that your animal is having a severe reaction to a sting then please call the practice immediately for advice.

It is also important to seek immediate veterinary advice if you suspect that your pet has been stung around the head, neck or mouth as this can make shock reactions more likely.


Our pets eyes are very delicate and unfortunately eye problems are a regular occurrence. Symptoms of these  commonly include: swelling, redness and discharge.

If you suspect that you pet has developed an eye issue, please seek veterinary advice as soon as possible. Until this can be obtained, it is important to keep the eyes lubricated to prevent drying out. This can be done by bathing with a clean cloth that’s been soaked with cooled boiled water.

If left untreated, eye problems can cause long-term health issues. Therefore, even if the issue appears to be minor, we still recommend giving the practice a call for free over-the-phone advice.


Ear infections are also common in pets and cannot be treated without veterinary attention.

If your pet is excessively rubbing their ears, or appears to have developed a sudden hearing problem, we recommend that you inspect the inner ear on both sides to check for redness, swelling or discharge. 

Should you suspect a problem, it is important that you do not try to bathe or pour liquid in the ears. This, unfortunately, often makes the situation worse. As with eye health, ear infections can lead to permanent problems if left untreated, and we strongly recommend that you contact the practice for further advice.

If your animal develops violent and sudden head shaking, it is likely that they have a foreign object stuck in the ear canal. Please do not attempt any sort of home treatment in these circumstances, and seek immediate veterinary advice.

Seizures & Fits

If your pet collapses and starts to twitch uncontrollably, it is likely that they are having a seizure or fit.

Should this occur, it is important that you try to remain as calm as possible. Your pet is very good at sensing your emotions, so if you are feeling stressed, they will be too.

If you witness your pet having a seizure please do not try to comfort, restrain or move them as you run the risk of injury to yourself and your pet. Instead, try to clear away items from around your pet – anything such as tables or chairs, which could potentially cause your pet further harm.

It is important to create a dark, quiet and calm environment by closing the curtains or blinds and turning off the lights, as well as any other surrounding stimuli, such as televisions or radios.

Take a note of the time of the incident, the approximate duration of it and any other observations that you feel might be important, such as twitching and stiffening of the legs.

Report the incident to your vet as soon as possible who will be able to help and advise. 

Heat Stroke

Signs that your pet is overheating include:

  • Heavy panting or rapid breathing.
  • Excessive thirst.
  • Glazed eyes.
  • Bright or dark red tongue and gums.
  • Staggering and stumbling.
  • Increased pulse and heartbeat.
  • Excessive drooling.
  • Weakness and collapse.
  • Vomiting.
  • Seizures.
  • Unconsciousness.

If you suspect that your pet is overheating:

  • Move them immediately to a cool shaded area.
  • Place all four paws in cool water.
  • Soak towels with cold water and place over your pet’s body and head, as well as under their arms and groin area. If using cool packs, please make sure they are covered with a towel.
  • Fill a bowl with cool water and encourage drinking.

Please be aware that heat stroke can develop and become serious very quickly. If you are at all concerned, contact us immediately on 0141 339 1228 or bring your pet straight down to the practice.

Return to Pet Advice