At Portland Veterinary Emergency and Specialty Care, we understand the stress of an emergency visit. Take a look at what to expect when you arrive.

Please call us as soon as you arrive: 207-878-3121, option 1. We will gather information from you via phone. A technician will come outside to meet your pet (please wear a mask when interacting with our staff). Please remain in your car while we examine your pet inside. We will call you to follow up once we’ve determined your pet’s needs. The veterinarian will provide a recommended treatment plan and the estimated cost of your pet’s treatment. If your pet is staying with us for continued care, you will be asked to sign the treatment plan and pay a deposit. If you have financial constraints, please let us know right away so that we may help you prioritize your pet’s care.

Due to the nature of an emergency facility, an unavoidable wait may occur. Please be supportive of other pet owners and their pets. We greatly appreciate your patience. We base the priority of care upon triage determination.


PVESC has a staff of highly experienced veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and assistants who will be taking very special care of your pet. Here is what you can expect while under our care. We monitor your pet closely for blood pressure, continuous electrocardiogram, blood parameters, and oxygen saturation. The doctors confer twice daily on all hospitalized patients, and your pet may be under the care of more than one doctor. Doctor and staff rounds also occur twice a day, at 7:00 am and 5:00 pm.

You may call the hospital after 1:00 pm to discuss your pet’s progress.  If the doctor is not available to take your call, a technician who is familiar with your pet will be able to speak with you directly. If you would like to speak to the overnight doctor about your pet’s overnight stay, please call prior to 7:00 am.  

While your pet is in the hospital, we can provide the following advanced life support services and treatments:  

  • Fluid Therapy
  • Oxygen Therapy
  • Pain Management
  • Blood Transfusions
  • Nutritional Management
  • Cardiac Resuscitation
  • Defibrillation and Post Resuscitation Care
  • Ventilator Support

Please know that your pet will receive the best care possible. We take our responsibility to care for your pet very seriously. We do everything we can to make your pet as comfortable as possible.


A good surgical experience for your pet starts with the acknowledgment that pain control is essential, and best provided prior to a surgical procedure. All patients are given medications to help calm and provide pain control prior to actual anesthesia. This allows for a less stressful experience and less general anesthetic. Our concern is your pet’s well-being, from the start to complete recovery. Pain medication is commonly given during the procedure itself, and always provided immediately afterward, as well as during the home recovery period. Pain control methods include systemic use of opioids, systemic use of anti-inflammatory medications, local anesthetics for numbing, and continuous infusions of local or systemic pain medications.

It can be difficult to differentiate dysphoria behaviors from pain behaviors. Please call your regular veterinarian initially for assistance and our surgeons as needed.

Please only use the pain medications prescribed. Always let the surgical team know what pain medications your regular veterinarian has already provided. Discuss any past reactions or concerns. This will also help your regular veterinarian know what to expect.

Opioids: Opioids such as Tramadol, Morphine, Hydromorphone, Buprenorphine, and Butorphanol all are very well tolerated but have potential side effects for the intestinal system.

NSAIDS: Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory medications are wonderful arthritic and pain medications used every day in veterinary and human medicine, but have potential side effects for the intestines, liver, or kidneys. Please only give if your animal is eating and drinking well, and call your regular veterinarian with any concerns.

Local Anesthetics: Lidocaine and Bupivacaine are commonly given at the surgical site to help numb areas for hours after surgery, or longer with the use of soaker catheters which can continue infusions of these anesthetics for even days after some more major reconstructive procedures.