Deciding on any type of surgery for your family pet is never an easy decision, some surgeries, however, are beneficial to the lifelong health of your dog. Our Hoquiam vets discuss spaying and neutering your dog, what to expect with the surgery and the lifelong benefits.
Why spaying or neutering are recommended
It may seem as though elective surgeries are not worth the stress that comes along with it, after all, you want to keep your beloved pet safe. But having your dog spayed or neutered will provide them with a lifetime of protection from various diseases and conditions.
Along with disease prevention having your dog sterilized cab also helps to prevent undesirable behaviors such as animal aggression, roaming and mounting, as well as ensuring that you won't have any unwanted puppies to worry about.
Is it a safe procedure?
Spay and Neuter surgeries are some of the most common surgical procedures performed by vets. While there is a risk of complications due to your pet being put under anesthesia, your vet will perform all necessary diagnostics beforehand to ensure that your dog can do so safely. During the procedure, your vet will closely monitor your dog and be on the lookout for any signs of illness or possible complications.
The difference between spaying and neutering
Spaying and neutering are both sterilization procedures that will prevent your dog from producing unwanted puppies. These surgeries are also commonly referred to as 'fixing' your pet. The neutering or castration of male dogs involves the surgical removal of the testicles while the dog is under general anesthesia. Spaying is performed on female animals and consists of the removal of both ovaries and the uterus, while under general anesthesia.
Recovery after surgery
Once the surgery has been completed on your dog and they are ready for recovery you will want to ensure their health and comfort. There are a few things you can do to help your dog heal successfully, they are:
- Ensure that your dog has the space to recover isolated from other animals and preferably indoors.
- It is recommended that your dog refrains from running and jumping for a few weeks following the sterilization surgery. Your vet will provide you with all instructions that they would like you to follow with your dog's recovery.
- Even if you believe that your dog will be okay or if they look uncomfortable it is incredibly important that your dog always wears their post-operative jumpsuit (recovery suit) or a cone (Elizabethan collar) to prevent your pet from licking the incision site. If your dog is allowed to lick the incision it is possible that they may develop an infection.
- To allow for your dog's incision to heal as quickly as possible, it is not recommended to bathe your dog (or allow your dog to swim) for at least ten days after spaying or neutering.
- Be sure to monitor the incision site on a daily basis for any signs on infection or inflammation.
If you become aware of any redness, swelling or discharge at the surgery site, or if the incision has become an open wound, or if your dog seems lethargic, stops eating, begins vomiting or has diarrhea, then you should contact your vet immediately.
Will my dog be in pain after surgery?
When it is time to pick your dog up after the surgery it is entirely normal for your dog to not quite be acting like themselves, your dog may be tired or queasy. These are common side effects of the general anesthesia that was administered. Your pet should be acting more like themselves by the following day aside from some pain and moving around a little more carefully.
Spaying your female dog is typically a little more invasive than neutering males, however, recovery times should be pretty similar for either of these procedures.
It should only take a few days to a week for the pain from the surgery to be gone completely. If this is not the case and your dog is still in pain after a week then it is recommended to follow up with your vet.
Pain relief during and after surgery
During the surgery, your dog will be under general anesthesia and be receiving pain medication. Once your vet has completed the surgery, they will administer pain medications to your dog via an injection. This long-term pain medication will last for approximately 12 to 24 hours after being administered.
Once you are heading home your vet will prescribe any post-operative medication that your dog will need to help them control the pain. Some of the most common medications prescribed after surgery include Torbugesic or Rimadyl.
It is very important to follow your veterinarian's instructions for administering the medication exactly. Failure to do so could cause harm to your dog.Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.