Animal Health


Q & A

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Small animal

Post surgical

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Your pet has just undergone major surgery. While welcoming him or her home, there are some things to remember to assure a speedy recovery.



Your pet may not feel himself for the next 12 to 24 hours. Keep him in a warm, quiet aea, away from other pets, where he can rest and is not likely to injure himself. A kennel or a small room is ideal.


Some nausea may occur in the first couple of days after surgery and it would not be unusual for your pet to refuse food for a day or two after surgery.


Never feed or give water to a pet that still seems groggy. Once your pet seems awake and alert, take things slow. Some anesthetics can cause nausea. Introduce water first. If all goes well, a small amount of food can be offered a few hours later. Wait until tomorrow to return to his normal feeding schedule.


A cough may persist for a couple of days as a result of the throat tube. This should not persist longer than a couple of days.


Surgical Site


After the surgery, your pet will require a watchful eye to make sure that he or she heals quickly and properly.

Check the surgical site daily, and report any redness, discharge, or swelling to your vet.

If the incision is open, see your vet immediately.

Pets who show a propensity to lick their stitches will need an Elizabethan or "E" collar to restrict access to the stitches. This is not very comfortable for the pet but it must be used strictly until the stitches are out and the incision is healed.


Exercise / Activity


Activity should be restricted during the week following surgery. Excessive activity can lead to swelling or fluid accumulation under the incision. If a fluid pocket does form, it should resolve on its own after a few weeks. If a fluid pocket forms and drains liquid from the incision, the dog should be re-checked with the veterinarian