Dana Bay Veterinary Clinic

Caring for your animals

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Consulting Hours

Mondays - Fridays 08:00 - 11:00 and 15:00 - 18:00
Saturdays 08:00 - 11:00
Sundays (Emergencies Only)

Contact Us

Telephone number 044 698 1815
Fax number 044 698 1858
Email address danabaaivet@gmail.com 


082 820 4810


Animals in distress

Handling an animal in distress :

All of us will occasionally come across an animal in distress. They are either lost , have been hit by a car , are scared of thunder or have been scared by people trying to restrain it. Either way – they are distressed , adrenaline levels are high and it will be almost impossible to judge their normal temperament as they are trying to flee.

Firstly people safety has to be prioritised above that of the animal. If in a vehicle, make sure you park you vehicle on the side of the road , make sure your hazards are on and that you are aware of oncoming traffic. Don't just run over the road to catch the animal and in the process get hit yourself or endanger other commuters who are trying to avoid you.

Phone the local SPCA and Traffic department – they have been trained and have the correct  equipment to safely restrain and transport a distressed animal – whether dog / cat / horse / buck.

The first rule to keep in mind when handling any kind of animal is that the least restraint is often the best  restraint. This does not mean that you give up your control, just that you use as little restraint as necessary while maintaining control of the situation. Every animal and every situation is different so  there are no hard and fast rules as to what method works best in which situation.

Here are a few general guide lines for especially dogs and cats that might be found :

  • Before attempting to restrain an animal you should take a moment to allow the animal to become comfortable with you.
  • Crouch down so that you are on their level. Do not sit on the ground as you will be unable to move away or protect yourself if necessary.
  • Do not move in behind or crowd around a dog. 
  • Avoid direct eye contact but maintain safe visual contact with the animal.
  • Talk in soothing tones. Avoid high-pitched, excited talk.
  • Yelling or screaming should be avoided at all cost.
  • Concentrate on the animal you are handling without being distracted by other activities. 
  • Try patting your leg or the ground, motioning the animal towards you.
  • If you have a leash / rope, try to gently and slowly slip it around the neck
  • If a small animal, you can try and cover it in a blanket / towel and scoop it up that way. Cats can be gently forced into a kennel or box, if one is available.
  • Continue to talk in a soft soothing voice as this will have a calming effect . Try NOT to get excited and try and keep crowds away while you wait for the SPCA or help to arrive.
  • Always be prepared to protect yourself or move away quickly in the event an animal becomes aggressive unexpectedly.
  • Never put your face directly into the face of a dog or cat.

If you are unable to get close enough and the animals' distress and  anxiety increase too much, we would advise you just sit and wait with the animal until further help arrives. The SPCA have got specialised equipment to aid in safe restraint of these animals and veterinarians could potentially also be called in to sedate the animal if necessary.

If there is any doubt about the temperament of an animal-ASK FOR ASSISTANCE. There are no

extra points for being a 'hero'.  Your safety is most important!