Critical Care

Critical Care Department at Toronto Animal Health Partners in North York

Our pets can become critically ill. This means that they require life-saving interventions to maintain their health. Veterinary Critical Care specialists are doctors who specialize in the field of critical care. Patients are housed in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and are monitored extremely closely to ensure they are provided the best care.

Our specialists are highly trained individuals who provide life-saving measures such as high-flow nasal oxygen therapy and mechanical ventilation on dogs and cats, just like in humans. Our Critical Care team works in close association with all services in the hospital to ensure your pet is cared for with the most specialized team approach possible. They are considered the ‘heart of the hospital’ given their essential support to all services and their patients within the hospital.

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Services Offered

  • Life-saving interventions, monitoring and therapy for the critically ill dog or cat
  • Diagnosis, monitoring and management of shock and hypotension
  • Treatment of severe acute respiratory emergencies requiring:
    • Oxygen supplementation
    • High flow nasal oxygen therapy
    • Mechanical ventilation
  • Acute treatment of cardiac emergencies including congestive heart failure and arrhythmias
  • Stabilization of pets with severe trauma
  • Administration of blood products for pets with anemia or coagulopathies
  • Initial treatment and control of neurologic emergencies including seizures
  • Diagnosis and therapy for toxicities
  • Correction of severe electrolyte disturbances
  • Intensive management of acute kidney injury
  • Treatment of environmental emergencies including heat stroke and hypothermia
  • Use of cage-side ultrasound to ensure timely and accurate diagnosis of emergent patients

Common Reasons for Consultation

  • Diagnosis and management of unstable or critically ill pet of any cause
  • Sepsis
  • Shock
  • Respiratory emergencies
  • Cardiac emergencies
  • Life-threatening electrolyte disturbances
  • Coagulopathies
  • Acute anemia
  • Endocrine emergencies (Addison’s disease, diabetic ketoacidosis)
  • Neurological emergencies
  • Environmental emergencies (heatstroke, hypothermia)

Critical Care Team

Dr. Dawn Crandell

Medical Veterinary Director


Dr. Judy Brown

Co-Head of Critical Care Department


Dr. Michelle Coady

Veterinary Specialist


Dr. Alice Bennett

Veterinary Specialist