What happens when a pet comes in for surgery?
Your pet is dropped off at the clinic between 7:30 am and 8:30 am so we can begin surgery preparations. Routine surgeries are performed on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Your pet is examined by a Veterinarian who checks your pet from head to tail. Your pet’s vital signs are taken including temperature, pulse and respiration rate. If anything is abnormal, we call and discuss it with you. If everything is normal, we proceed with the next step.
If your pet is over the age of 6 years, we take some additional precautions. We place an IV catheter in your pet’s front leg to administer fluids and medications. IV fluids help to maintain blood pressure under anesthesia and give us a way to quickly administer any medications needed. Next, we take a blood sample for testing. We perform a complete blood count which tests for infection, inflammation, and anemia; we also perform a blood chemistry which checks your pet’s major organ function. If anything is abnormal, we call and discuss it with you. If everything is normal, we proceed with the next step.
Your pet is given injections of pain medication and a sedative in preparation for anesthesia. Your pet goes back to the patient ward to allow the medications to take effect. This ensures that your pet is relaxed and pain free before, during and after the surgical procedure.
Your pet is given an injection of medication to induce anesthesia. We place an endotracheal tube in your pet’s airway to administer oxygen and inhalant anesthetic during your pet’s surgery. This keeps your pet safe and asleep during the surgery.
Once your pet is under anesthesia, we shave the surgical area and scrub it with antiseptic. The antiseptic scrub is applied three times to make sure your pet’s skin is free of dirt and bacteria that may cause a skin infection. Then we attach monitors to your pet to keep track of vital signs during anesthesia. We monitor heart rate, EKG, pulse oxygenation, respiratory rate, blood pressure, and carbon dioxide level.
Your pet’s surgical procedure is performed by a licensed Veterinarian and monitored by a registered Veterinary Technician. If you have questions about a specific procedure, please call and discuss it with us.
Your pet is monitored by a registered Veterinary Technician until awake and able to swallow on its own. Your pet will recover in the hospital for at least 4 hours to make sure he or she is totally awake and aware prior to going home.