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Cats, Dogs

4 Steps to Help Your Pet Recover from Spay and Neuter Surgery

The Paw Print

Essential Pet Blog

Congratulations! You’ve made the decision to spay or neuter your pet. While it can be difficult to think of your beloved companion undergoing a surgical procedure, try to remember why you are doing it in the first place.

So what comes next? When your pet returns home, he or she will require a little extra TLC. Follow this guide to help your furry friend get back on their feet in no time.

  1. Recovery environment

When your pet comes home, make sure you’re prepared to offer them a quiet place to recuperate. It needs to be free from other animals, children, and unnecessary commotion. Many pets are prone to vomiting as they come out of anesthesia, so consider placing them in an area that offers easy clean up, such as a bathroom, or anywhere with tile or hard flooring. Place absorbent puppy pads on any blankets, towels, or bedding your pet will be laying on to keep clean up simple. As always, make sure your pet has convenient access to food and water, but don’t expect them to eat or drink very much within their first 24 hours at home.

  1. Climbing, jumping, and running

As your pet is coming out of their anesthesia, he or she may experience poor balance and other physical sensations they haven’t experienced before. Make sure you, or someone you know, is able to help them into your vehicle, and avoid allowing your pet to climb stairs, jump, or run until their incision is healed, so you can reduce the risk of tearing any stitches.

  1. Incision site

It’s important to keep an eye on your pet’s healing process. Check the incision site daily for redness, swelling, or discharge. If you notice anything concerning, contact your veterinarian right away.

  1. Recovery Collar

Along with keeping your pet from climbing, running, or jumping until he or she is fully healed, you will also want to keep them from licking or scratching their incision site. As their incision begins to heal, the skin will get itchy, prompting plenty of licking and scratching. Sometimes, the only way to keep your pet from disturbing their incision site is to make them wear a protective collar or recovery shirt.

Read this: How to select the right cone or protective collar for your pet

Above all else, follow your veterinarian’s care instructions for your pet. Contact your vet immediately if you notice bleeding, pale gums, torn stitches or an open incision, excessive panting or vocalization of pain, lethargy, refusal to eat or drink 24 hours post-op, a foul smell from the incision site, or any concerning issues at the incision site.

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