With any trauma, it is strongly advised to have the animal seen immediately by a veterinarian. After a traumatic incident, it may be easy to evaluate external injuries (cuts, bruises, hurt legs, broken teeth, etc.), but many times internal injuries have occurred. Without immediate diagnosis and appropriate treatment of such internal injuries, the animal may continue suffering, have delayed healing, and even die within hours. Realize, some trauma victims may not show external injuries at all, yet have extensive internal injuries. Sometimes it may take hours, days, and in some injuries like diaphragmatic hernia, even months before clinical signs become evident.


  • Witnessed traumatic event like being hit or ran over by car, falling from a height, animal attack or fight.
  • Visible lameness/deviation of limb.
  • Visible wounds/bleeding.
  • Unwillingness to walk, or lay down.
  • Unwillingness to lift head/neck.
  • Staggering/incoordination.
  • Altered mental status/unconsciousness/seizures.

First Aid: Transfer your pet to a veterinary facility immediately.