Pre-op Surgery Instructions


The Night Before Your Appointment

Dogs & Cats – Please keep inside and withhold all food and treats after midnight the night before surgery. This reduces the risk of vomiting and aspiration during surgery. Allow normal access to water.

Rabbits – Keep contained and allow normal access to food and water up until your appointment. Please bring a small amount of food to your appointment as well.

Check-In (7:30 – 8:30 AM)

Please make sure you’re on time for check-in. We must stick to a strict schedule and if you arrive late we may have to reschedule your appointment.

Please allow your pet to urinate/defecate in the morning before bringing them into the clinic. There is a potty station for dogs adjacent to the clinic entrance. Dogs must arrive on leash or in a carrier; cats and rabbits must be in a carrier. We prefer separate carriers for each pet. If your dog is not good natured around other people, a basket muzzle is required. If you do not have one, please come inside for one before you bring your dog inside.

When you arrive, please bring your pet inside and we will get them settled into their kennel. We will hold onto any carriers for the day. During check-in you will fill out a short admission form, select your services, provide proof of Rabies vaccination, and pay. Payment must be provided in the morning before surgery – cash and debit/credit cards are accepted. We do not accept Care Credit.

Pick-up (4:00 – 5:30 PM Same Day)

During pick-up we will go over post-op instructions. We encourage you to review these instructions online before your appointment so you can be prepared for the 7-10 day recovery period. We are not staffed to provide boarding services, so your pet must be picked-up the same day.

Post-op Surgery Instructions


General Recovery Information

Your pet will typically require 18-24 hours to recover from the general anesthesia. Your pet may be groggy and have poor balance. This will make climbing stairs or getting in and out of the car more difficult than usual. We strongly recommend you keep your pet confined in a crate or small room away from other pets and children the night after surgery.

Appetite should return within 24 hours of surgery. Once home, you can offer water and small amounts of food. If vomiting occurs, wait until the next day to offer food again. Anesthesia commonly causes nausea, so your pet may not want to eat immediately. Do not change your pet’s diet and do not give them any people food during the recovery period. Feeding them their regular diet will help avoid gastro-intestinal upset.

You must restrict your pet’s activity for the next 7-10 days to allow the tissue time to heal. Cats should be kept inside. Dogs should go out on a leash to urinate/defecate and return inside to rest. Keep the incision site dry; do not bathe or apply topical ointment during the 10 day recovery period. Do not allow your pet to lick or chew at the incision. If this occurs, an e-collar MUST be applied to prevent additional licking/chewing that could cause infection. Your pet received a green tattoo next to their incision. This tattoo is superficial in the skin and is NOT an extra incision.

Minimal redness and swelling of the surgery site should resolve within several days, but if they persist longer, please call our office at (865)579-6738. You should contact us immediately if you notice any of the following: pale gums; depression; unsteady gait; loss of appetite or decreased water intake; vomiting; diarrhea; discharge or bleeding from the incision; difficulty urinating or defecating; labored breathing. Do not give your pet any human medication. It is dangerous and can be fatal.

We will make every reasonable effort to treat at our clinic, at minimal cost, any post-operative complications resulting directly from the surgery, if the above post-operative instructions are followed in full. Your regular veterinarian must address illnesses or injuries that are not a direct result of surgery. Please call for an appointment as soon as you see any cause for concern at (865)579-6738.

 

Please contact your regular full service veterinarian or Animal Emergency & Specialty Center at (865) 693-4440 for any after hours emergencies.

 

Female Dogs & Cats

Check the incision site daily. During her spay, her uterus and ovaries were removed through a small incision on the abdomen. Unless otherwise noted, all sutures are internal and absorbable (over the next several months) and the skin is closed with surgical glue. Females should have no drainage; redness and swelling should be minimal.

In Heat Females

You must keep her away from un-neutered males for at least two weeks. While she is unable to become pregnant, she will still attract intact males for a short period of time. Attempts to breed post surgery can result in serious injury or death.

Male Dogs

Check the incision site daily. During his neuter the testicles were removed, but not the scrotum. The incision for male dogs is directly on the scrotum and is left open to allow for drainage. Small amounts of drainage/discharge is normal for up to three days. Too much activity causes increased drainage, so activity restriction is very important. Keep males away from unspayed females for 30 days. Be prepared to keep pets separate during the recovery period.

Male Cats

Check the incision site daily. During his neuter the testicles were removed, but not the scrotum. The incision for male cats is directly on the scrotum and is left open to allow for drainage. Small amounts of drainage/discharge is normal for up to three days. Too much activity causes increased drainage, so activity restriction is very important. Keep males away from unspayed females for 30 days. Be prepared to keep pets separate during the recovery period.

Rabbits

The most important component of recovery for rabbits is monitoring of appetite and normal defecation. We will offer your rabbit the food you provided very soon after surgery and they need to continue eating and drinking at a normal rate once they return home.  Monitor defecation and please contact us or your regular exotics veterinarian if pellet output declines or is unusual. You may need to provide more fresh greens during the recovery period if pellets seem small or dry or if they are not consuming as much water as usual. Feeding them their regular diet and plenty of hay will help avoid gastro-intestinal upset.

Keep fixed males and fixed females separate for 30 days. Spayed female rabbits cannot become pregnant, however, attempts to breed post surgery can result in serious injury or death.  Neutered males could potentially impregnate intact females for several weeks post neuter and should be kept away from intact females for minimum of two months.

Check the incision site daily. During her spay, her uterus and ovaries were removed through a small incision on the abdomen. Unless otherwise noted, all sutures are internal and absorbable and the skin is closed with surgical glue. Females should have no drainage; redness and swelling should be minimal. For males, the testicles were removed but not the scrotum. The inguinal ring was closed with suture in males and the skin closed with tissue adhesive.

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