Hospital Admit Guide

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What to Expect When Your Pet is Admitted for Hospitalization

These guidelines apply when your pet is being admitted for hospitalization at CARE. Depending on the service caring for your pet there may be some variation, but in general these guidelines apply.

Doctor Updates

Doctor updates are different for Emergency and Specialty. Please see below for the appropriate service caring for your pet.

Emergency Service

You will receive twice-daily updates from the doctor at the end of their shift to let you know how your pet did over the course of the shift and what to expect over the next 12 hours (discharge, further diagnostics, continued treatment, etc.). If your pet is admitted in the middle of the day or the middle of an overnight, your admitting doctor will discuss whether an update is expected at the end of their shift. If you miss a call from the doctor, a detailed message will be left on your voicemail.

  • Morning update between 6:00-7:00 a.m.
  • Evening update between 4:00-6:00 p.m.
  • Please add our phone number (704-457-2300) to your phone contact list in order to prevent a return call from CARE potentially being detected as SPAM.
  • If you missed call from CARE, please listen to your voicemail first. The ER Doctors give updates on all ER patients typically between 6:00-7:00 a.m. and 4:00-6:00 p.m. While this is the typical process, sometimes calls can be a bit later. Please do not be concerned if your update is later than this scheduled timeline, as the status and volume of the emergency room can change rapidly, and adjustments need to be made to provide the best quality of care for both hospitalized patients and outpatients.
  • If there are any major concerns during the day or night, a doctor will call to update you on a status change.
Specialty Service
  • In general, the attending specialist will call you by midday with an update on how your pet is doing, along with diagnostic results and a plan. When caseloads are high or there are critical patients in the hospital your update may be delayed.
  • Please add our phone number (704-457-2300) to your phone contact list in order to prevent a return call from CARE potentially being detected as SPAM.
  • If there are any major concerns during the day or night, a doctor will call to update you on a status change.

Visitation

During COVID, we are not allowing hospital visits as a general rule. This is for the protection of both you and our staff.

Food

  • Please let us know if your pet has any food allergies.
  • If your pet requires a special diet, please let us know so we can check to see if we have it in stock. If it is not something we carry, you will be asked to bring your pet’s food along with feeding instructions.
  • Our typical hospitalized diet includes bland foods, including chicken, baby food and specialized prescription diets produced by Hill’s Science Diet, Royal Canin, or Purina Pro Plan.
  • Sometimes pill pockets and peanut butter are used to help give oral medications. Please inform our staff if your pet cannot have peanut butter due to owner allergy.
  • We cannot accept raw diets.

Bedding

  • We have padded foam beds and blankets/towels to provide each pet when hospitalized.
  • We do not accept personal items as they easily get soiled and lost.

Medications

  • We are happy to use previously prescribed medications while your pet is hospitalized. Please bring medications in the original bottles (name and directions clearly marked). Unfortunately, we cannot take medications in pill dispensers, pre-loaded in pill pockets or in Ziploc bags. This is strictly to prevent medication errors and is in your pet’s best interest.
  • Controlled Drugs: Unfortunately, due to DEA regulations & law, we cannot take in controlled drugs when your pet is admitted to the hospital. If your pet needs to take these medications while hospitalized, they will be dispensed from our controlled drug stock.

If you prefer, you can download a printable PDF of the Hospital Admit Guide here.

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