VCA Veterinary Referral and Emergency Center

Our Pet Care Partners

Caring for all of your pet's needs takes more than we could ever provide alone. Here are some local organizations and businesses that we recommend to our patients and their families.

  • PAWS-Pet Animal Welfare Society

    About PAWS

    PAWS rescues & re-homes approximately 115 dogs and 435 cats annually. Many of the dogs faced euthanasia at local pounds and most of the cats that we help are strays and abandoned cats that roam our streets. A portion of the pets that come to PAWS have been relinquished by their owners who are no longer able to care for them.

    PAWS has a handful of paid staff and a team of dedicated volunteers that help with everything to fundraising, to kennel work, to walking dogs and much, much more. Every person at PAWS is a valued & needed member of our team - without them we could not accomplish the miracle that happen every day! We constantly seek to increase the number of lives we can save by finding adoptive homes for the animals in our care, working closely with other animal groups, and raising funds to secure the supplies and facilities necessary for our operation. PAWS also seeks to decrease the number of unwanted pets by informing and educating the public about the importance of spaying and neutering.

    Their History

    PAWS is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that began in 1962 by Westport, Connecticut resident Betty Long to rescue homeless dogs and place them in permanent homes. In the early 1980s, our rescue efforts were expanded to include cats. For 37 years, PAWS rented space from local boarding kennels & veterinary hospitals. Over time, the demands placed on us by the community increased and we felt that in order to increase & expand our services, we would need our own shelter. In 1999, PAWS undertook the task of building a shelter of our own. We moved into our own shelter in 2001 and have since greatly increased the number of pets we have been able to help.

    Visit PAWS-Pet Animal Welfare Society

  • ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center Hotline

    The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center is staffed 24 hours with veterinary health professionals who have been specially trained in veterinary toxicology. If you think that your pet may have ingested a potentially poisonous substance, call the ASPCA 24 hour emergency Animal Poison Control Center hotline at (888)426-4435. A $65 consultation fee is applied to your credit card.

    Visit ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center Hotline

  • EARS (Emergency Animal Response Service)

    The Connecticut Emergency Animal Response Service is an organization designed for rapid-response to single emergency events (such as a household fire) or larger disaster incidents (such as hurricane evacuation) for animals in our state. If called upon, the EARS Team can provide technical rescue, triage, transport of animals to veterinary clinics, and establish temporary sheltering for a wide variety of animals. EARS is entirely run through the commitment of volunteers, and no one involved in the organization receives any payment for their participation, they are brought together by a love and dedication to the safety of animals in our communities.

    Members of the EARS Animal Rescue Team must complete and adhere to training provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as well as additional training given by EARS itself. The most important part of this training involves the Incident Command System (ICS), which was established by FEMA to assure that all emergency services, disaster response teams, and similar organizations operate under the exact same guidelines. This allows EARS to seamlessly work together with local fire departments and emergency services, the Red Cross, CERT Teams, and various other relief organizations.

    In addition to preparing training and responding to animal emergencies, EARS also places a large emphasis on public outreach and owner education through community programs, library lectures, and many other events throughout the year. Our aim is to encourage everyone on ways to be prepared for all types of emergencies and keep their animals safe. The EARS Team hosts Pet First Aid training, microchip clinics, outreach programs at pet supply stores and animal hospitals, and much more. These are aspects that any individual can be involved with, even those with no training in emergency response, animal rescue, or animal handling. This will help ensure that in emergencies there is accurate information regarding animal issues being distributed to the communities, and assistance is available where needed and that preparedness, planning, and response for animals in disaster situations is present and understood.

    Visit EARS (Emergency Animal Response Service)

  • Trupanion Pet Insurance

    Pet insurance from Trupanion covers 90%* of actual veterinary costs with no limits on payout. Call 855.270.6576 or visit
    *Terms and conditions apply

    Visit Trupanion Pet Insurance

  • Pet Loss Support

                                                 The loss of a beloved pet can be as heartbreaking as the loss of a family member or friend. We all need places of comfort and understanding to grieve the loss of our precious companions. VCA Veterinary Referral and Emergency Center is offering a pet loss support group on the first Wednesday of every month from 7-8:30 PM. The group will be led by Karen Olio, MA, Med, LPC who is a loving pet owner and licensed professional counselor. You are not alone with your grief. Everyone is welcome.

    Visit Pet Loss Support


General Practice

We have over 600 animal hospitals in 41 states and 4 Canadian provinces that are staffed by more than 3,000 fully-qualified, dedicated and compassionate veterinarians, with more than 400 being board-certified specialists.

The nationwide VCA family of general practice hospitals give your pet the very best in medical care, providing a full range of general medical and surgical services as well as specialized treatments such as wellness, spay/neuter, advanced diagnostic services (MRI/CT Scan), internal medicine, oncology, ophthalmology, dermatology, cardiology, neurology, boarding, and grooming. Services may vary by location.

Our family of pet hospitals stands out by delivering the greatest resources in order provide the highest quality care available for your pets. By maintaining the highest standards of pet health care available anywhere, we emphasize prevention as well as healing. We provide continuing education programs to our doctors and staff and promote the open exchange of professional knowledge and expertise. And finally, we have established a consistent program of procedures and techniques, proven to be the most effective in keeping pets healthy.

Find a VCA General Care Animal Hospital near you:


See all VCA Animal Hospitals >


Emergency Care

24/7/365, if your pet has a medical emergency, you can find us at the following address:

VCA Veterinary Referral & Emergency Center
123 West Cedar Street, Norwalk, CT 06854
Telephone: 203-854-9960

Click here for directions to our location.

VCA Veterinary Referral & Emergency Center is a fully-equipped 24/7/365 emergency hospital serving pets and their people in Norwalk and the surrounding communities in Fairfield County and southwestern Connecticut. If you suspect your pet is having a medical crisis, our experienced team of veterinarians, technicians and assistants are here to assist you.

Our Emergency and Critical Care units can assist in all of the following situations requiring immediate medical attention: Auto accidents, traumatic injuries (fractures, bites, burns, lacerations, wounds), respiratory emergencies (choking, difficulty breathing), vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty urinating/defecating, shock, loss of consciousness, dizziness, staggering, tremors, seizures, paralysis, toxic reactions, poison ingestion, labor and delivery problems, blood in urine or feces, swollen, hard, painful abdomen, heatstroke.