Please review the below information after your pet’s visit
After your pet has undergone surgery, diligent attention to the following instructions is vital to a speedy recovery while minimizing complications.
- Your pet may appear more lethargic than usual. This is a normal side effect of general anesthesia & should dissipate after 24 hours.
- A slight cough for 1-2 days is expected due to the endotracheal “breathing” tube.
- Defecation may be delayed several days because of the anesthetics and fasting.
- A slight increase in urination on the first day is common from the IV fluids that were administered.
- Some pets become carsick on their way home after undergoing anesthesia.
- Please keep your pet in a warm and dry place when you arrive home after surgery; only feed them a small portion of food (up to ½ of the normal amount). The following day, you may resume their regular diet.
- A decreased appetite usually isn’t a concern for the first day after surgery. If your pet is not eating or drinking 24 hours after going home, please notify us.
- Fresh water should always be available.
- Activity is often restricted for a period after surgery, ranging from several days to many weeks, depending on the type of surgery. We will provide you with specific detailed instructions from your veterinarian.
- Activity includes running, jumping, climbing, swimming, stairs, etc.
- To prevent infection, surgical incisions need to remain dry and clean. If the incision becomes soiled or dirty, gently clean it with a sterile saline solution. Otherwise, leave it alone. Do not apply any topical medications or creams unless instructed to do so.
- Check the incision frequently until it is completely healed (10-14 days). Monitor for swelling, oozing, pus, redness, heat, foul odor, or loose/missing staples/sutures.
- The incision may have a small amount of bloody discharge on the first day. This is normal. If you feel the incision is bleeding heavily, please contact us right away.
Short for Elizabethan collars, e-collars go around your pet’s neck to prevent them from being able to reach their incision. Licking at the incision is one of the most common sources of postoperative infection. Please keep the e-collar on at all times.
- After certain surgeries, your pet may go home with a bandage or splint, which must remain clean, dry, & intact.
- Apply a heavy plastic bag over the bandage when taking your pet outside and remove it when indoors. You may purchase a MediPaw Protective Boot if your pet is in a bandage for an extended period of time.
- If the bandage or splint gets wet, dirty, or becomes loose, or if you smell a foul odor, there may be a sore developing under the bandage; please call us immediately.
- Follow the medication schedule exactly and give the prescribed medications for the length of time indicated.
- Pain medications are necessary for most procedures.
- Watch for signs indicating your pet is uncomfortable: panting, lethargy, loss of appetite, and crying/vocalizing.
- Dogs in pain will be unable to settle down and rest.
- Cats are more likely to hide and stop eating.
- If you miss a dose, do not double up on the next dose. Simply give the next dose scheduled.
- Do not give any medication or supplements without first discussing them with the doctor.
- Some medications can be toxic to humans. Use gloves when handling these medications to protect your health. Children should not be permitted to medicate pets.
- Separate pets’ medications from human medications
- Pill Pockets are a great way to give your pet a treat & their medication at the same time.
The following are signs of a potential emergency & require immediate attention:
- Bleeding from the surgical site.
- White gums
- Temperature over 104
- Depression or unresponsive behavior
- Any signs of redness, swelling, or discharge could mean an infection.
Thank you for trusting us with your pet’s care. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us at 415-586-5327 (option 4) or email us at [email protected].