Call us: 803-561-0015. After Hour Emergency: 803-561-0015. Get Directions

Our board-certified emergency / critical care doctors are experts in dealing with animals with complex critical and multi-system diseases. Critical care patients often come to SCVSEC following traumatic injury, development of acute life-threatening illness or in conjunction with major surgery. Rather than seeing cases primarily, the critical care service is involved and integrated with all services in our hospital. Depending on your pet’s needs, the critical care service may assume primary responsibility for their care. Life-saving procedures, including thoracocentesis, pericardiocentesis, oxygen therapy, and blood transfusion therapy are performed routinely by this talented team.

Our critical care service works seamlessly with our ER and other specialty departments and your primary care veterinarian to ensure a comprehensive approach to patient care.

What is a board-certified veterinary criticalist?

A veterinary criticalist is a veterinarian who has successfully completed additional training, including a minimum of a 1-year internship followed by a 3-year residency in a program that meets the guidelines established by the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care (ACVECC). Board-certification requires publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal and completion of a rigorous examination.

What to expect if my pet is under the direct care of the Critical Care service

Our critical care service operates 4 days a week. When our Criticalist is not in the hospital, patients are closely monitored by our other Specialty or Emergency Department Doctors. It is helpful for our team to have access to your pet’s medical history if your pet is hospitalized with us. Our staff will facilitate this as early as possible.

Additional diagnostics (eg, comprehensive blood work, urinalysis, radiographs, ultrasound, CT) may be recommended to accurately diagnose your pet’s condition and optimize treatment recommendations. Our critical care specialists will work with you on developing the best treatment plan taking all factors into consideration. We appreciate the opportunity to partner with you and your primary care veterinarian to provide optimal care for your pet.

We understand it can be stressful to have your pet in the hospital and we value the human / animal bond you share. With this in mind, we strive to provide daily updates from our technicians and veterinarians.

What will it cost?

Treatment costs vary widely. Our team will create an estimate for your pet’s appointment and will keep you updated throughout your pet’s stay.


Visiting your pet may be possible.  If you would like to arrange this, please speak with the technician caring for your pet to schedule.  We recommend visits be limited to 30 min or less to avoid disrupting your pet’s ongoing treatment.


Contact Us

South Carolina Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Care


3924 Fernandina Road Columbia, SC 29210

Hospital Hours

Emergency: 24 hours
Specialty Departments: Monday-Friday: 8 am - 6 pm