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Equine Emergency Services

Emergency Service is offered to our existing clients, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Always call 519-595-4911 for all emergencies.

During office hours you will be connected directly to our office staff. After hours you will be connected to an answering service that will page the veterinarian on call.


NOTE:  Emergency calls are subject to an emergency fee.


If you have a question or concern about your horse after our office hours, one of the veterinarians in our on-call group will be available to take your call and help you decide if you might require emergency care. They will also instruct you what to do until they arrive. 


The list of equine emergencies we’re prepared to handle includes but is not limited to:

  • Acute lameness

  • Choking

  • Colic

  • Eye injuries

  • Foaling difficulties

  • Illness (including fever, loss of appetite, dullness and diarrhea)

  • Pregnancy problems

  • Seizures

  • Swellings, lacerations and punctures

  • High temperature/Fever

What You Can Do In An Emergency


If you discover that your horse is injured or in distress, keep calm and try to keep your horse calm. Then try to determine the cause of the problem. 


We recommend moving the horse to a safe area where further injury is unlikely to occur should it go down.

Ask others in the stable to help you, delegate someone  to call Milverton Wellesley Veterinary Services, 519-595-4911. Then ask someone to bring you the first aid kit and help you to hold your horse.


We advise you to NOT administer drugs, especially tranquilizers or sedatives, unless one of our veterinarians gives you explicit instructions.


Knowing your horse’s normal vital signs can be a big help as you attempt to assess what is wrong:

  • Heart rate: 28 to 40 beats per minute *

  • Respiratory rate: 8 to 16 breaths per minute

  • Rectal temperature: 37.5 to 38.5 degrees Celsius. 

  • Capillary refill time (time that passes before colour returns to gum tissue adjacent to teeth after press and release): 2 seconds


* To find a horse’s heart rate, place your hand in the left armpit of the horse and feel for the heart beat.


Does Your Stable Have A Medical Emergency Plan Posted?

  1. Post the Milverton Wellesley Veterinary Services telephone number in your stable, 519-595-4911.

  2. Post a map to the Ontario Veterinary College in case your horse is referred to their large animal hospital: 
         Ontario Veterinary College,
         University of Guelph,
         45 McGilvray Street,
         Guelph, Ontario

  3. Post the names and numbers of colleagues that can help you trailer your horse to the hospital if needed.


Do You Have a First Aid Kit at Your Stable?

We recommend keeping the following  materials in a clean, easily accessible area:

  • Adhesive wrap

  • Animalintex poultice pad

  • Cotton roll

  • Flashlight and spare batteries

  • Latex gloves

  • Leg wraps

  • Rectal thermometer

  • Surgical scrub and antiseptic solution

  • Sharp scissors

  • Telfa pads

  • Vet Wrap

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