Home / How to Care for Your Pet at Home After Surgery
We typically only recommend surgery for pets when the benefits of the surgical procedure far outweigh any risks associated with operating or with the recovery process. To keep your pet comfortable and ensure they have a smooth, swift, and safe recovery, consider the following post-operative care instructions for pets.
Post-Operative Care Instructions for Pets
Specific Instructions From the Veterinarian
Every pet is different and every surgical procedure is a little different, too. If our veterinarian provides you with any specific post-operative care instructions for your pet that either contradict the information in this article or are not included in this article, be sure to follow them carefully.
After surgery, keep your pet comfortable in a warm, clean, and calm location where they will be able to relax quietly, separated from other household pets and small children. Only go out on leashed walks for short potty breaks.
Food and Water
Your pet should have continuous access to fresh water after surgery. Some pets experience nausea following general anesthesia, so we recommend limiting food. Unless otherwise instructed, feed your pet 1/2 of their normal portion of food for dinner. If they still seem hungry after finishing this, you can give them the rest of their normal portion.
Rest and Restricting Activities
Your pet should not run, jump, or participate in any other strenuous activities for at least one to two weeks after surgery.
Pain and Infection Management
Depending on your pet’s procedure, we might provide you with post-operative medications to help limit pain and inflammation at the surgical site and/or to prevent infection. Be sure to administer these exactly as instructed.
Protecting the Incision
Your pet’s incision site should not get wet for at least one week. Prevent your pet from chewing or licking at their stitches by having them wear their Elizabethan collar (cone) at all times.
Causes for Concern
If your pet seems to be experiencing extreme pain, is not having regular bowel movements, does not have an appetite for more than a day following surgery, has their stitches come out, or has severe swelling, redness, or other signs of infection at the incision site, contact our office right away.
Contact TangleWilde Veterinary Clinic With Any Questions
We understand that helping your pet recover from surgery can be a delicate and stressful time for a pet parent. We want you to know that our veterinarians are always here to assist you and answer any questions you might have. Please feel free to contact our office.