We are committed to caring for your pet – while maintaining the highest level of safety for our Associates and pet owners. We thank you for your continued patience and support. 
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Jason Hicks

Jason Hicks, DVM University of Minnesota - Associate Veterinarian
Staff Veterinarian
Emergency & Critical Care
Jason Hicks, DVM University of Minnesota - Associate Veterinarian

At a Glance

Practicing Since:


Specialties Include:

Surgical Emergency Medicine
Wound Management 

My Pets:

Gertie - Terrier mix
Bailey - Mastiff mix
Waffles - French Bulldog

Dr. Hicks received his Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences from the University of Maryland Baltimore County in 2003. He then worked as a certified veterinary technician for five years prior to receiving his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the University of Minnesota in 2012. He went on to complete a rotating medical/surgical internship and a surgical specialty internship at Animal Specialty Group in Los Angeles.  

Dr. Hicks has a special interest in small animal surgery and took part in a clinical trial for a newly designed total hip replacement implant system during his internship training. He also has an interest in emergency/trauma medicine and reptile medicine.  

Dr. Hicks is an avid movie-goer and a lifelong football fan (go Niners!). His hobbies include Brazilian jiu-jitsu and MMA training, and being dragged down hiking trails by his two dogs, Izzy and Gertie.

See our departments

Emergency & Critical Care

Thank you for visiting the Emergency & Critical Care department of VCA Valley Oak Veterinary Center. The E/CC department is staffed by board certified critical care experts dedicated to providing the most current therapies available in veterinary medicine. By incorporating advanced techniques derived from the fields of veterinary and human medicine we are able to ensure that your patient is being treated in the best possible way. Our critical care department strives to provide compassionate care for all of the patients of WLA by having at least one of our specialists in attendance at all patient rounds. The E/CC service at VCA Valley Oak Veterinary Center works very closely with the surgery, internal medicine and cardiology services to help ensure optimal patient care.

What Is An Emergency and Critical Care Specialist?

A board certified specialist in emergency and critical care is a veterinarian who has obtained intensive, additional training in treating life-threatening conditions.

An emergency and critical care specialist can help in the following kinds of cases, among others:

  • Traumatic injury (including fractures, bite wounds, burns, lacerations)
  • Respiratory emergencies (including cases in which the use of ventilators is needed)
  • Animals in need of blood transfusions
  • Animals that are in shock
  • Animals with life threatening neurologic disease, such as coma or severe seizures

While your general practitioner veterinarian can diagnose and treat many health problems and handle many routine emergencies, certain situations may require the care of a doctor who has had specialized, intensive training in handling emergency and critical care for your pet. An emergency and critical care specialist typically works in tandem with your general practitioner veterinarian on a referral basis, as well as with any other needed specialists, until the emergency is resolved.

How Can I Find A Specialist in Emergency and Critical Care for My Pet?

If your veterinarian does not handle after hours emergencies, then he or she probably already has a referral relationship in place with a local or regional emergency hospital. You can also look for emergency specialists in your area on the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care (ACVECC) website.

When Does My Pet Need Emergency Care?

Any of the following situations can be considered an emergency:

  • Trauma (falling from a height, hit by car, fights with other animals)
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Ingestion of a foreign object or unknown substance
  • Bleeding
  • Vomiting blood
  • Blood in the feces or urine
  • Swollen, hard abdomen that is painful to the touch
  • Serious wounds
  • Suspected broken limb
  • Any injury to the eye
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Seizures
  • Inability to move or sudden weakness
  • Unusual or erratic behavior
  • Signs of extreme pain, such as whining or shaking
  • Straining to urinate (especially a male cat)
  • Labor that does not progress
  • Signs of heatstroke

What Is Critical Care?

While an emergency is unfolding, or throughout recovery from a serious illness or accident, ongoing diagnostic and therapeutic care and constant monitoring of your pet's condition may be required. Many emergency facilities offer 24-hour supervision of critically ill pets and, just as in human hospitals, may have dedicated Intensive Care and Critical Care Units (ICU/CCU). Such facilities are equipped to provide oxygen therapy, cardiac monitoring, blood transfusions, and nutritional support.

Will My Regular Veterinarian Still Be Involved?

Many emergency hospitals work on a referral basis with general practitioners. In some cases, your pet will only be referred to the emergency service for after hours care. In other cases, your pet may be in the care of the emergency and critical care specialist for the duration of the emergency and recovery, but then referred back to your general practitioner veterinarian for follow up and routine care.

Did You Know?

There are more than 125 board-certified veterinary emergency and critical care specialists in the U.S. today and it is the fastest growing specialty in the profession.

Our Emergency & Critical Care Team

Staff Veterinarian
Co-Medical Director
Staff Veterinarian
Staff Veterinarian
Staff Veterinarian
Staff Veterinarian
Staff Veterinarian
Staff Veterinarian
VCA Valley Oak Veterinary Center

2480 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway

Chico, CA 95928

Main: 530-342-7387

Fax: 530-899-7686

Hospital Hours:

    Mon-Sun: 7:00 am - 8:00 pm

Are you a Primary Care Veterinarian? We have dedicated resources for you.

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