After coming home from the castration (neuter) 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 he 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 he 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 his paw may have been shaved - this allowed the placement of blood pressure monitoring equipment, so that we could monitor his progress under anaesthesia closely.
The surgical site is located under the abdomen, just in front of the scrotum. Do note that the surgical site and wound care advice is slightly different for dogs that have one or both testes retained in the abdomen - please refer to our article on home care following abdominal surgery for more details. There will be several sutures present on your pet's 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 surgical site should be checked daily for swelling, discharge or loss of sutures. Some scrotal swelling is to be expected following the surgery, and this usually resolves without further intervention in the week following the surgery. However, if you are worried that the scrotal swelling is excessive and/or seems to be getting larger in the first 24 hours home with you, please phone to book your pet in for a check over.
It is important that you keep your pet in a clean and dry environment so that the surgery wound remains clean. Dogs should not get bathed or allowed to get their wound wet in any way, until all the stitches have been removed.
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 his wound, he 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. 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.
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 at the time of discharge, sutures are typically removed 10 days after the castration surgery. Please phone for an appointment.
Your pet would have received additional pain relief medications after his surgery, and some pets 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.