Recovering from surgery can be a painful experience for both humans and animals. If your dog or cat needs to undergo surgery for whatever reason, it is important to know how to take good care of him after the procedure. Your veterinarian will provide you with any necessary medications, but it’s good to know what else you can to do to make sure your pet recovers quickly, comfortably and safely. Read on to learn more about how to take care of your dog or cat after surgery.
Give Your Pet a Safe Spot
Surgery can be a traumatic experience for a dog or cat, and he/she will need time and space to recover. When you bring your pet home from the veterinarian, make sure you have a place set aside that is specifically set up for the pet to relax and rest. For dogs this might mean a plush doggy bed. For cats, sometimes something that can be used as a “hide box” will be especially appreciated. Giving your pet his own closet or bathroom where he won’t be bothered is sometimes a great solution for his post-surgery recovery. Be sure to provide your pet with plenty of water and food, depending on the vet’s orders. In almost every case activity and exercise will need to be limited and supervised for a few days. If you have other pets in the house, make sure your recovering pet has a place to be alone. Also, make sure other pets in the house don’t get too interested in helping their pal get well – it is no great success if a housemate chews out the operated pet’s stitches in the course of giving love and comfort.
Observe Your Cat Carefully
When your pet comes home after surgery, your veterinarian will have given you specific orders regarding food and water intake, activity level, and incision care. Like humans, dogs and especially cats may not have much of an appetite following surgery, so they may need special food or encouragement in order to keep their strength up. You also need to keep an eye on the surgery site. If your pet is scratching or biting at the incision areas, you can put an Elizabethan collar on him. It probably won’t be his favorite accessory, but it will prevent him from irritating the surgery site.
Follow the Doctor’s Orders on Pain Relief
Pain is just as real for our pets as it is for us. Every pet operated at the Chastain Vet Med Group receives pain relief medications during and immediately after surgery, and nearly all will have pain relief meds to go home with as well. Always administer any medicines dispensed exactly as your veterinarian prescribes, even if you think your pet doesn’t need it anymore. And please, no home remedies, no aspirin, and no Tylenol.
Chastain Veterinary Medical Group offers comprehensive veterinary care for your furry, feathery, or reptilian friends. Contact Meadow Brook Animal Hospital of McKinney at (972) 529-5033 or Preston Road Animal Hospital of Dallas at (972) 239-1309 to schedule an appointment and you can rest assured that your pet will be in good hands.
Leaving your pet outside unattended for long periods is never desirable, but you should be especially careful in the winter when there are a whole host of seasonal dangers to your pets. Watch out for these winter specific dangers to keep your pet safe and happy:
Freezing Cold Temperatures
Pets that fair well outside in Texas during most of the year may have trouble with the cold weather that occurs for just a few months. If you have a pet that lives outdoors, make sure they have a safe, dry, elevated, and, most importantly, warm shelter from harsh cold weather. Outdoor shelters should not allow cold wind to enter because pets are just as susceptible to wind chill as are we. For indoor pets, make sure that you keep the house at a comfortable temperature, even if while you are gone. Just because you are at the office doesn’t mean your pet won’t get cold if the heat is turned way down.
Harsh Wind Chill
Keep outdoor time to a minimum for your pets when the wind is blowing during the winter months. A simple 10 mph breeze will lower the perceived temperature by 6-10 degrees, or more. A body sweater is a good idea for short haired pets, just like how you yourself might need a coat when going out. Keep their hair as long as possible and take them into a warm environment as soon as possible to keep your pet healthy.
Snow and Ice
If you pet is outside in snowy or icy conditions, make sure you wipe them down with a wet towel when they come back inside. Beyond the benefit of keeping your pet dry so they won’t be as cold, this also allows you to remove any mud, salt, antifreeze, or other irritants that could be in your pet’s fur. Antifreeze is life threatening to pets and is most often found on the ground during winter months, making it especially important to wipe your pet down.
Cats and other small animals often find warmth in the engine bays of cars during the winter. A few quick raps on the hood of your car before you start it will ensure that no animal, pet or otherwise, are hurt from moving engine parts.
At Chastain Veterinary Medical Group, our vets put your pet’s wellness at the top of their list. We offer a wide range of veterinary services in addition to pet grooming and pet boarding. Call us today at Preston Road Animal Hospital in Dallas at (972) 239-1309 or Meadow Brook Animal Hospital in McKinney at (972) 529-5033 for additional information.
Each year thousands of dogs and cats get sick due to the accidental ingestion of common household products. It is important to understand how different substances can impact your pet so that you can take the appropriate precautions to keep your pet healthy and out of harm’s way.
Common over-the-counter pills, dietary supplements, and other human medications can have a devastating effect on your pet. Never give your pet a medicine meant for people unless you’ve been instructed by a veterinarian. Ensure that household medication is not left in the open and is not accessible to your pet, as it can have disastrous consequences to a curious pet.
Chocolate contains methylxanthines, which, in high doses, can cause vomiting and seizures.
Onions and garlic destroy red blood cells in cats and dogs, leading to anemia.
Macadamia nuts can be toxic to dogs.
Grapes and raisins cause kidney failure in cats and dogs.
Avocados contain a fungicidal toxin called persin, which is fatal to dogs in high doses.
Alcohol causes serious damage to dogs and cats, possibly resulting in coma and death.
Indoor Chemicals: Some household items present more apparent danger to your pet. Cleaning supplies and rodenticides are commonly used in households but can be deadly if ingested. Ensure that all chemicals are carefully applied and stored where your pets can’t reach them..
Outdoor Chemicals: Fertilizers, insecticides, and garage chemicals like antifreeze are highly toxic. Keep all substances secure and inaccessible to your pets.
If your pet has ingested any of these household products or foods and you live in the Dallas area, contact Chastain Veterinary Medical Group immediately. Call us with any questions you may have regarding your pet care at Preston Road Animal Hospital of Dallas at (972) 239-1309 or Meadow Brook Animal Hospital of McKinney at (972) 529-5033.