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Post-Operative Care/Instructions

Your animal has had major surgery and will need to be

well cared-for afterwards to help prevent complications.

Following the instructions below will help ensure your animal has a successful recovery​​​​​​​​​​.

*No running, jumping, playing, swimming, or other strenuous activity for 7 to 10 days (“recovery period”). Keep the Animal quiet. The Animal must be kept indoors where they can stay clean, dry, and warm. It is imperative that the Animal stay warm for 24 hours after surgery. No bathing during the recovery period. Do not apply any topical ointments to the incision during the recovery period. Dogs may only go on short, leashed walks in order to urinate or defecate.


*The evening following surgery, the Animal may exhibit symptoms of undergoing an anesthetic event. Symptoms for dogs may include grogginess/unsteadiness, whining, crying, and excessive drooling. Symptoms for cats may include slower reflexes, grogginess, head bobbing, dilated pupils, sound sensitivity, light sensitivity, and aggression If you choose to place the animal in a crate the evening following surgery DO NOT PLACE FOOD OR WATER IN THE CRATE WITH THE ANIMAL. Instead wait until the animal is supervised and place food and water outside of the crate. The Animal may have a white ID band for Twin Ports Spay/Neuter’s identification purposes, you can remove this band by pulling the tab on the ID band.

*Check the incision site(s) twice daily. There should be no drainage. Redness and swelling should be minimal. Females have an incision on their abdomen. This incision is held together with suture that dissolves via the body over the next 5 months. On top of the incision there is surgical tissue adhesive that will dissolve over the next 7-10 days. If it is exposed to water it will dissolve, so ensure the area stays dry by patting with a soft cloth, do not rub. Males have two incisions directly on their scrotum. These incision have no suture or tissue glue, instead they will scab over and heal naturally via the body. If the Animal had an umbilical hernia that was repaired or was cryptorchid (males only) there may be additional incision(s). If it is noted in the paperwork that the Animal received staples please return in 7-10 days for removal.


*Do not allow the Animal to lick or chew at the incision. The Elizabethan collar (cone/e-collar) MUST be worn to prevent additional licking and chewing that could cause irritation/infection. The Elizabethan collar is bulky and the Animal maybe somewhat distressed when initially wearing it – however, this is usually very temporary, and most animals quickly learn to tolerate it. The Animal may have trouble eating or drinking while wearing an Elizabethan collar. If you observe the Animal having difficulty doing so, you may remove the Elizabethan collar temporarily at meal times, or provide assistance with eating and drinking – you must, however, provide 100% supervision during this time.


*Do not change the Animal’s diet at this time. Appetite should return gradually within 24 hours of surgery. DO NOT give treats, junk food, table scraps, milk or any other “people” food during the recovery period as these could mask post-surgical complications.


*Lethargy, diarrhea, or vomiting lasting more than 24 hours after surgery are not normal and the Animal should be rechecked by Twin Ports Spay/Neuter or taken to your full-service veterinarian.


*Animals may have a slight cough for a few days after surgery; this is due to the endotracheal tube placed down their airway to help them breathe during surgery.


*The Animal received a green tattoo next to their incision. This tattoo is a scoring process in the skin; IT IS NOT AN EXTRA INCISION. DO NOT try to wash or scrub off the tattoo - it is a permanent identification mark. The Animal’s hair will re-grow around the area.


*Twin Ports Spay/Neuter will see post-surgical rechecks for free. Any additional medication or products, including but not limited to, antibiotics, pain medication, or Elizabethan collars may be prescribed at an additional cost to the owner.


* Twin Ports Spay/Neuter administered a pain medication by injection post-operatively to the Animal. Dog are sent home with an additional three days of oral pain medication. Cats may be sent with additional pain medication depending on age and weight. Please administer this medication as prescribed on the prescription label. Do not give the Animal any over-the-counter products or medications that were prescribed by another veterinarian without approval from Twin Ports Spay/Neuter as there is a potential for drug interactions or adverse reactions which can be fatal.


*Even if all goes well, and you have no questions or concerns during the recovery period, we recommend that the Animal receive a post-surgical examination with Twin Ports Spay/Neuter or your full-service veterinarian 7 to 10 days after surgery. This is to have the incision checked for complete healing, to remove any skin sutures/staples, and to discuss any ongoing care. If the Animal received a vaccine at Twin Ports Spay/Neuter other than rabies, a “booster” vaccine may be needed. You will need to return the Animal to Twin Ports Spay/Neuter or your full-service veterinarian within the correct time frame to receive this booster vaccine (if given in the correct time frame, Twin Ports Spay/Neuter charges the cost of the vaccine at the time surgery for the booster vaccine).


 *We will make every reasonable effort to treat the Animal at Twin Ports Spay/Neuter for any post-operative complications resulting directly from the surgery, for minimal cost, if the above post-op instructions are followed in full. If you seek service from another veterinary clinic you are liable for any incurred costs.


*You may be referred to your regular veterinarian for further treatment or to address illnesses or injuries that are not a direct result of surgery.


*Please call 218-623-6342 for an appointment as soon as you see cause for concern. You can also e-mail a picture of the incision to  Twin Ports Spay/Neuter cannot be held responsible for complications resulting from failure to follow post-op instructions or for contagious diseases for which the animal was not previously properly vaccinated.


*If you have an emergency after hours please call the Blue Pearl Specialty + Emergency Pet Hospital (located 2314 West Michigan Street Duluth, MN 55806)  at 218-302-8000.

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