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Anesthesia

Advances in Veterinary Anesthesia is always changing.  Newer medications with low incidence of side effects are always on the horizon.  The Doctors will decide which protocol will be best for your pet.  Some procedures do require general anesthesia such as spays, neuters and other major procedures. Some may require local anesthesia and/or sedation only.  Blood work prior to anesthesia is highly recommended.  This consists of a chemistry panel  to assess major organ function and complete blood count. Depending on the results surgery will be performed as planned or it may need to be postponed to address the abnormalities.  All our patients undergoing major surgeries are also placed on intravenous fluids. 

 

Prior to surgery is it necessary to fast your pet from solid food for 10 to 12 hours. Water is allowed even the moring of the procedure. 

Will my pet have stitches?

For many surgeries, we use absorbable sutures underneath the skin.  These will dissolve on their own, and do not need to be removed later.  For major procedures we may use skin sutures or staples for closure. These will be removed 10 days post procedure.  It is important to keep the patient quiet for the 10 days to ensure proper healing.  If you have questions about the incision we advise you to call the office.

Will my pet be in pain?

Anything that causes pain in people can be expected to cause pain in animals.  Pets may not show the same symptoms of pain as people do; they usually don't whine or cry, but you can be sure they feel it.  Pain medications needed will depend on the surgery performed.  Major procedures require more pain relief than minor ones.  Dogs and cats react to drugs differently than we do also differently from each other. The type and length of pain medication will be decided on a case by case basis.

 

NEVER GIVE YOUR PET OVER-THE-COUNTER MEDICATIONS UNLESS THE DOCTORS RECOMMEND IT.

 

 

What other decisions do I need to make?

While your pet is under anesthesia, it is the ideal time to perform other minor procedures, such as dentistry, ear cleaning, or implanting an identification microchip.  If you would like an estimate for these extra services, please call ahead of time.  This is especially important if the person dropping the pet off for surgery is not the primary decision maker for the pet's care.  When you bring your pet in for surgery, we will need time to fill out paperwork and make decisions on the blood testing and other options available.  When you pick up your pet after surgery you can also plan to spend about 10 minutes to go over your pet's home care needs.  We will call or e-mail you the night before your scheduled surgery appointment, to confirm the time you will be dropping your pet off and to answer any questions you might have. 

 

In the meantime, please don't hesitate to call us with any questions about your pet's health or surgery.