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How to Care for Your Pet After Surgery

by Gwen (follow)
Gwen O'Toole Luscombe is the director of a boutique creative services company, The Ideas Library. Visit www.TheIdeasLibrary.com.au
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When your pet undergoes surgery, it can be a stressful time for both the pet and its owner.

pet surgery
Surgery can be a stressful time for both your pet as well as it's owner. Image credit: Michael Powell/sxc.hu

The recovery process for pets is typically simple, but for the first few days and even weeks after they come home from the vet, they'll likely need special care.

It'll take a bit of special care to help your dog recover quickly and effectively. Take these tips into consideration:

Keep your pet warm
The effects of surgery and anesthetics can affect your pet's ability to maintain a regular body temperature. You'll want to ensure they can maintain their ideal temperature, so for the first couple of days be mindful of their temperature and help keep them warm with an extra blanket or old towel in their bed. Sometimes a warm hot water bottle can also be a welcome treat for your pet.

pet surgery
Your pet will need a bit of special care while its recovering. Here are a few tips on what you can do. Image credit Ben Earwicker/sxc.hu

The floor is the best place
While you're wait for the anesthetic to wear off, it's always safest to keep your dog on the floor or in its bed. While the anesthesia wears off, your pet can experience problems with balance. It can be dangerous for your pet if they are resting on your bed or on the sofa as they might fall off easier and injure themselves further, or worse, tear stitching.

Also try preventing them from using stairs if they have stitches or have been recently desexed.

Give them space
Keep your dog away from other animals as well as children. Sometimes the gentlest dog can become temperamental when they aren't feeling themselves. This might cause them to be a little more likely to snap or bite because they are feeling vulnerable and stressed.

Particularly smaller children may not understand that the pet is recouping and might play a bit too roughly with the animal.

Pain, stress, and disorientation are common post-surgery symptoms which will be temporary so don't worry too much if your dog is behaving out of sorts.

Experts recommend isolating dogs for at least 1-2 weeks.

pet surgery
Your pet will likely be a little lethargic and out of sorts following an operation, this is normal. Image credit: Ali Brasi/sxc.hu

Give them plenty of water and fresh air.
Even on the day of the surgery, you want to take your dog outside every few hours to let it do its business. Extra fluids, particularly from IV's will mean that your dog is more likely to need to urinate more frequently. Without regular trips outside to relieve himself, your dog may have accidents indoors, even during sleep.

It's also important to keep your dog hydrated after surgery, even if they don't seem thirsty, keep a full bowl of water nearby. Monitor your dog's drinking after surgery to ensure she is getting enough fluids. Also offer small amounts of food; except in cases of food intolerance, experts recommend something bland like chicken, but no treats.

Check their wounds
Your vet will regularly check on your pet's progress or give you specific instructions on how to care for their wounds. Follow these directions to the letter to ensure the quickest and most efficient healing.

#Pet Care
#Pet Ownership
#How To
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