The RVC operates a 24-hour veterinary emergency veterinary clinic, for dog, cat and other pet owners whose regular vet practices have signed up to our scheme. This is based at Queen Mother Hospital for Animals (QMHA) in Hertfordshire Queen Mother Hospital for Animals, Hawkshead Lane, North Mymms, Hertfordshire AL9 7TA.

If you are a client of one of the local vet practices signed up to our Out-of-Hours pet emergency care service, or the RVC's veterinary practice in Camden, you will automatically be redirected when you call their number. 

The service operates 7:00pm-8:30am weeknights, weekends and all bank-holidays. 

What you can expect

Participating veterinary practices have arranged for the QMHA to provide a pet emergency service on their behalf. This might be during your practice's normal working hours, or it might be at night, weekends or at any other time when your usual practice is closed.

In an emergency, call us on 01707 666399. Your call will be taken by one of the Out-of-Hours Emergency Care team, who will take your details and advise you on what to do next. You will be given an indication of the relevant consultation fees.

We will triage your pet as soon as possible after arrival

  • Pets are seen and treated by a qualified vet, usually assisted by a final-year veterinary student
  • Animals that require the most urgent and immediate treatment will be seen as a priority
  • In most cases, our primary care team will be able to treat your pet and provide all the veterinary care required
  • We will contact your usual vet with an update of your pet’s progress as soon as possible during normal opening hours
  • If your pet is critically ill, or requires immediate specialist attention, with your consent they will be transferred to our ECC Service or one of our other specialities.

Upon arrival

Important – Clients who have symptoms of COVID-19 (Fever, persistent cough, loss of taste/sense of smell) must NOT come onto site. Please ensure that you always wear a face covering on site and inside our buildings.

Please enter via security who will direct you to the hospital, please park in the carpark directly outside. Check in with the reception team or if after midnight please use the handset located in entry way to inform us you’ve arrived. Your pet will then be triaged by a vet/vet nurse/final year vet student to assess their condition and take them into the hospital for stabilisation if required. You should have received a link via SMS or email to complete our admission forms, please complete these and return promptly. If you have not received this or do not have a mobile, please alert a member of the team who can provide a paper copy.

For life-threatening cases or patients requiring a trolley please use the Emergency Drop Off point, and alert reception. (You can also inform our Security Team at the entrance barrier if your pet is in a life-threatening condition, they can then call ahead to anticipate your arrival.) Your pet will then be triaged by a vet/vet nurse/final year vet student to assess their condition and take them into the hospital for stabilisation if required. Once your pet has been admitted into the hospital please then move to a standard parking space. You should have received a link via SMS or email to complete our admission forms, please complete these and return promptly. If you have not received this or do not have a mobile, please alert a member of the team who can provide a paper copy.

Consultation and treatment

In most cases this is a consultation with a member of the veterinary team, during which a treatment plan and any further associated costs will be fully discussed.

After the consultation your pet may be admitted to the hospital for treatment. At this stage you will be required to pay a deposit before you leave. We can offer two ways of claiming via your insurance, if your pet’s treatment exceeds £500 then we can process a ‘Direct claim’ for you, meaning that we will invoice your insurance company directly. To do this, we will require a copy of your current insurance policy and any required claim form to be completed by the policyholder, plus a deposit of £100 and a direct claim fee of £25. Alternatively, if your invoice is below £500 or should you prefer to settle the invoice with us yourself first, we will still process your claim as an ‘Indirect claim’ there will be no direct claim fee for this. The insurance company will simply settle with you rather than us.

If your pet is not insured, you will be required to pay 50% of the estimated cost of treatment on admission of your pet and the remainder upon discharge. Our online payment portal is available at: https://www.rvc.ac.uk/small-animal-vet/specialist-referrals/online-payment

How to reach us by car

Clients are advised to approach the Royal Veterinary College along Hawkshead Lane from the A1000.

From the M25, leave at Junction 24 and take the A111 (Southgate Road) to Potters Bar. At the first main junction and traffic lights, turn right onto the A1000 towards Hatfield. Follow the A1000 through Potters Bar, past the bus garage and after two sets of traffic lights, turn left onto Hawkshead Road and then fork left onto Hawkshead Lane.

From the A1 take the A1001 Eastbound and then take the A1000 Southbound and follow the signs to the Vet College (a right turn onto Hawkshead Road and then into Hawkshead Lane).

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