Elective and emergency surgery

Our pets are much the same as us when it comes to their health. They also face medical emergencies and surgery. It is just more difficult to know what is wrong with our animals as they can’t tell us.

If your pet develops a problem requiring surgery and advanced care, you may be referred to a veterinary surgeon. You can be sure some veterinary surgeons have undergone additional training to become a specialist, and while many veterinarians can perform surgery, the more difficult cases are handled by the specialist surgeon.

When health problems arise with your pet, the vet will diagnose the problem and treat the animal. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, your pet may simply require an antibiotic, but other times their condition may be more serious and involve different procedures, including surgery.

Skilled veterinarians tackle among others, a range of surgical procedures:

  • Dental surgery
  • Neutering and spaying
  • Orthopedic surgery
  • Ophthalmic surgery
  • Soft tissue surgery
  • Wound repair
  • Amputations
  • Spinal surgery
  • Tumour removal

These kinds of routine surgery can extend your pet’s life.

Surgical procedures fall into two categories – elective procedures and those requiring urgent attention.

Common elective surgery procedures include the likes of spaying and neutering and dental extractions, while urgent or emergency
veterinary consultation might include choking, seizures, heat stress, eye injuries or fractured bones.

Two common types of surgery

Spaying and Neutering

Look at spaying and neutering as an example. When your dogs and cats are fertile, accidents happen and a female in heat will be relentlessly pursued by the male dog till mating occurs – and an unwanted litter.

Spaying your female prevents also prevents uterine infections and the chance of cancer is also reduced.

There are a host of other benefits that come with spaying and neutering your young pets. Neutered cats and dogs make better companions for humans too as they don’t have the restless impulse to roam and find themselves a mate. The males also, aren’t focused on marking their territory, urinating or spraying strong-smelling urine indoors and out.

Orthopaedic Surgery

Orthopaedic surgery repairs fractures or corrects bone defects and involves some soft tissue surgery as well. Your pet may have been involved in a traumatic incident or they may have a condition known as luxating patella where they require surgical correction of a joint.

The Surgery Procedure is explained to You

The decision to do surgery on your pet will always involve a vet discussing the surgery with you and making sure you understand some of the possible complications. The age and health of your pet is always a consideration and you will be informed what the possible outcome could be if you opt not to proceed with surgery.

The veterinary team will always present you with all the facts surrounding the surgery so that you can make an informed decision
about your beloved pet.

With surgery, pre-surgical exams and diagnostic tests are conducted making use of all the appropriate specialized equipment to perform surgery on your pet. After surgery, post-operative care will be supervised.

Procedure for surgery

  • Pre-anesthetic blood tests are done as these reveal problems that may require attention first before surgery. Problems can cause anesthetic complications.
  • The blood test results help with knowing what drugs and dosage will be required for the pre-med injection.
  • If a problem does show, the pet receives an intravenous fluid drip ahead of anesthetic, protecting the patient against low blood pressure during anesthesia.
  • The vet-tech preps the patient for the drip.
  • Pets receive pain-relieving and calming meds ahead of their surgery.
  • Every patient coming in for surgery has a checklist protocol attached to their enclosure or bed so staff know precisely when the animal had their pre-med, what drugs were given, heart rate as well as other details.
  • The pet is relaxed and ready for anesthetic. Some dogs- the brachycephalic breeds – boxers, pugs, bulldogs – dogs known for their squashed-up faces – may require a face mask for oxygen before anesthetic.
  • Your pet is monitored throughout surgery.

After surgery your pet is further monitored and is ready to go home after being checked over. You’ll have some discharge instructions to follow and be given a date when to return with your pet.

Postoperative Care

During the postoperative period, the wound will need to be kept clean. The vet may have inserted a drain into the surgery area and this may ooze for a few days. Your pet may also have a temporary plastic cone around its head to prevent them from licking and biting at the wound.

No one really knows why some dogs succumb to illness when they’re young and require surgery. Theories range from dog-breed, unfortunate genetics, poor early diet to environment and lifestyle.

Whatever the reason for a dog’s surgery, Herriot House Vets in Toowoomba provides exceptional medical services and care for your beloved pet’s well-being.