Post-Operative Instructions

Your dog or cat has undergone general anesthesia and surgical sterilization (complete removal of ovaries and uterus or testicles). For the safety and well being of you and your animal, we recommend that the following post-operative instructions be carefully followed:

  1. Dogs and cats must be kept indoors for at least one (1) week after surgery. This will enable you to carefully monitor recovery and will help prevent complications and possible death. Dogs may go outside on a leash to urinate or defecate, then go right back inside.
  2. As when any anesthesia is used, stomach upset can occur. To avoid, restrict the amount of food and water your dog or cat has access to during the first 3 hours at home after surgery. You can provide one or two ice cubes to lick during this time. Do not offer food to patients immediately upon returning home (you may offer a very small amount of food 3 hours after you return home if animal is able to hold down water). You can gradually increase the amount of food and water over the next 24 hours.
  3. Restrict your animal’s activity for the next 10 days. No running, lumping, or swimming. Keep dogs on a leash, even in a fenced yard, and keep “bathroom breaks” as short as possible.
  4. You should check the incision at least twice daily until healed. A small amount of blood seepage and/or bruising is normal immediately after surgery. Should you notice any continued drainage or excessive swelling, contact the Suncoast Humane Society (if after hours contact the nearest emergency clinic).
  5. Do not allow your animal to lick the incision area. Some pets are good about not licking. But then there are some that won’t leave the area alone. You may need to purchase a cone to go around the neck to restrict licking. Too much licking of the area could cause infect or the incision to open.
  6. If the incision should become dirty, gently clean around the area with a cotton ball and warm water.
  7. You must not allow your dog or cat to get wet for at least 7 days after surgery. For this reason, bathing/grooming is also prohibited for at least one week after surgery.
  8. Sutures used during surgery are typically internal and dissolvable and should not require removal. Because male cat neuters do not require the use of sutures, we advise using shredded newspaper instead of litter in your cat’s litter box for 7 days after surgery to prevent dust particles from irritating the incisions.
  9. DO NOT GIVE ASPIRIN OR TYLENOL TO DOGS AND CATS FOR PAIN RELIEF UNLESS SPECIFICALLY PRESCRIBED BY YOUR VETERINARIAN. TYLENOL IS TOXIC TO ANIMALS AND ASPIRIN CAN BE DEADLY IF ADMINISTERED AFTER SURGERY BECAUSE YOUR PET IS ON PAIN MEDICATION.
  10. If you have any questions about your animal’s condition after surgery, please call the Suncoast Humane Society at 941-474-7884.
  11. For life-threatening emergencies requiring immediate attention or after normal business hours, please call the Veterinary Emergency Clinic of Port Charlotte at 941-255-5222 or Veterinary Emergency Clinic of Sarasota at 941-923-7260. (Although we will assist in any way possible, we are a low cost spay/neuter clinic and NOT a veterinary clinic, it is the financial responsibility of the owner for any medical needs performed elsewhere.)