Veterinary Intensive Care Unit
The veterinary Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at the Small Animal Hospital is dedicated to providing the highest quality care to critically ill small animal and special species patients. Our ICU unit is staffed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, by a team of trained veterinary nurses working closely with faculty veterinarians boarded in Emergency and Critical Care, veterinary residents, interns, and students. The care and well-being of your pet is assessed constantly by members of the veterinary ICU team.
A team approach is particularly important for critically ill patients. Each patient admitted to the veterinary intensive care unit has a team of caregivers including faculty veterinarians, veterinary residents, interns, ICU nurses and veterinary students. The veterinary ICU team works closely with other specialist services within the hospital such as surgery, internal medicine, cardiology, oncology and neurology to provide the highest possible level of care to each patient and to access a wide range of expertise from across the Small Animal Hospital’s veterinary specialty services.
All our veterinary patients are severely ill and have been admitted to the veterinary ICU because of the presence of a life-threatening disease condition and/or due to special needs (such as advanced pain management or complex fluid or drug therapy).
Patients include those with complex and multisystemic diseases processes such as:
- Acute renal failure
- Disseminated intravascular coagulopathy
- Multi-trauma patients
- Respiratory failure
- Snake bite
- Congestive heart disease and severe cardiac rhythm disturbances
- Recovery from major surgery
The veterinary ICU at the Small Animal Hospital provides state-of-the-art critical care monitoring and therapy. We specialize in advanced monitoring such as:
- Direct and indirect arterial and central venous pressure monitoring
- Lithium dilution cardiac output measurements
- Renal clearances
- Arterial and venous blood gas analysis
- Pulse oximetry
- End-tidal capnography and measurement of lung mechanics
- Urinary output monitoring via closed urinary collection systems and
- Bedside monitoring of blood gases, hematocrit, hemoglobin, electrolytes and colloid osmotic pressure.
Our veterinary technicians and doctors are trained and skilled in providing advanced therapies including:
- Fluid and colloid therapy
- Blood and plasma transfusion
- Hemodialysis for renal failure or certain toxicities
- Charcoal hemoperfusion in acute toxicities
- Cardiopulmonary cerebral resuscitation
- Oxygen supplementation
- Advanced pain management
- Mechanical ventilation
- Nutritional support
- Wound care
The mission of the veterinary intensive care unit is to provide a caring, compassionate environment for critically ill animals and their families whilst providing state of the art care and monitoring along with the most advanced veterinary treatments available.