After coming home from the spay surgery, your pet should be kept in a warm, dry, quiet and ideally indoor location in the 24 hours following discharge from our clinic. Your pet may still be a little bit drowsy after she goes home with you. There may also be some irritability or incoordination during this initial 24-hour period.
The shaved area on your pet's front or back legs is the IV injection and/or IV catheter site. Some bruising to this area may be seen when she goes home with you; however, if this persists beyond 72 hours, please give us a call at the clinic. You may also find that the underside of her paw may have been shaved - this allowed the placement of blood pressure monitoring equipment, so that we could monitor her progress under anaesthesia closely.
The surgical site is located under the abdomen for dogs; and either on the left side or under the abdomen for cats. There are several sutures present on the surgical site - it is helpful to count the number of stitches present when your pet first goes home with you, so that you will know if any goes missing before the wound is fully healed.
The spay surgical site should be checked daily for swelling, discharge or loss of sutures. It is important that you keep your pet in a clean and dry environment so that the surgical wound remains clean. Pets should not get bathed or allowed to get their wound wet in any way, until all the stitches have been removed. For cats - please only use shredded paper or non clumping litter in the litter tray to prevent the litter material from sticking to the wound.
It is also imperative that your pet is not allowed to lick at the surgical site because this may lead to the wound splitting open before it is fully healed and/or wound infections and/or other more serious complications. If you notice your pet licking or chewing at her wound, she will need to wear an Elizabethan collar to prevent this. E-collars may be purchased from our clinic reception. Ensure that pets are not allowed to roam outdoors without close supervision when they are wearing an E-collar, as this poses a choking hazard if it gets caught in a fence or branch.
Strict confinement to a small room or indoor area is necessary for the next 10 days. It is important that all dogs are toileted on a lead. Dogs should also only receive light lead exercise only until stitches have been removed, then gradually increase exercise over the next 2 weeks. No off-leash or boisterous activity is recommended until all your pet's stitches are removed. Your pet should avoid excessive physical activity such as running around or jumping onto/off items of furniture. Cats should remain indoors until the surgical wound is fully healed.
Unless otherwise advised by your veterinarian or veterinary nurse at the time of discharge, no change is usually required to your pet's diet following an anaesthetic or sedative. A small portion of your pet's diet should be fed in the evening that they come home with you, and then resume feeding normal portions in the morning. It is not unusual for some loss of appetite to occur in the first 24 hours following discharge from our clinic; however, if this persists, please give us a call at the clinic on (06) 3588675.
Unless otherwise advised by your veterinarian or veterinary nurse, sutures are typically removed 10 days after the spay surgery. Please phone for an appointment.
Your pet would have received additional pain relief medications after her surgery, and dogs would also have oral medications to go home with. Please administer the medications as directed on the label; ensure that pain relief medications are given with a meal.
Should you have any enquiries or further concerns about the post-operative care of your pet, please do not hestitate to phone us at (06) 3588675 to discuss.