Ah, that pitiable look of contrition, the telltale sign that a dog has had surgery. Yes, the dreaded Cone of Shame. These neck cones, formally called Elizabethan collars, are used after a pet has a procedure to prevent them from licking the wound site. While this is an important addition to prevent the removal of sutures or disruption of healing, dogs will all agree that they are uncomfortable.
Just because your dog needs a barrier to prevent them from getting at the surgical site, it doesn’t need to be the Cone of Shame. Here are some great alternatives to the Elizabethan collar presented to you from your friends at Leon Valley Veterinary Hospital.Continue…
Post-surgical care is important when it comes to proper healing and health. Healing can be a long process, and providing proper pain relief and nutrition can help tremendously.
While your pet patient is likely to have activity restrictions post procedure, Leon Valley Veterinary Hospital knows that post-op exercise has value. Encouraging safe pet activity after surgery can aid in recovery in a big way.
Knowing the Limits
Of course every pet and every surgical procedure are different. It is important to understand any post-surgical restrictions your pet has, so that you can be sure exercise and activity is performed safely.Continue…
After a surgery, your pet will be required to rest for a set period of time. In more complex surgeries, they may need to be crated to avoid movement. But eventually, your pet will need limited forms of exercise and activities to keep them healthy, encourage better recovery, and make them happy.
The team at Leon Valley Veterinary Hospital wants to give our pet owners some insight into how to safely exercise your pet after surgery. Movement is important to their healing and well-being, which is why understanding the right way to exercise and play post-surgery is so important.Continue…
It’s no secret that dogs, and to some degree cats, love to lick. Pets explore the world with their noses and mouths, and spend plenty of time each day grooming their fur and paws with their tongues.
Licking is a natural behavior, but it can cause problems for a pet after surgery. While a wound is healing, skin can feel itchy or uncomfortable, prompting an irresistible urge to lick. Surgery site licking can severely impair healing, however, and may even lead to infection. Not only is this hard on the pet, it’s hard on the owner too.
Your team at Leon Valley Veterinary Hospital has a variety of ways to prevent this type of licking, all of which are relatively inexpensive and simple to use.Continue…
If you’ve ever watched a vet or tech administer medication, it can look remarkably easy. That is, of course, until you try it at home. The animal in need of a pill seems to have found a new hiding spot, or catches a whiff of the “yucky stuff” and protests with clenched jaws. You might be able to fool them by mixing their medication in with their food or, better yet, a special treat, but their cleverness always prevails. Half-eaten dishes or discarded treats may reveal that they managed to eat around the pill.
Fortunately, pill pockets and other trickery offer great solutions to getting a picky pet to take their medicine.
Miss a Dose?
When animals miss doses of necessary medication designed to heal or safeguard health, progress can be upended, or they can be exposed to certain health complications. It’s important that they consistently receive the right dose at the correct time.
Saving Time and Money
Ensuring that your pet receives their timely medication reduces the negative impact of missed doses on their overall health – and your wallet. Administering medication at home doesn’t have to be fraught with confusion, frustration, or unfortunate results.
Animals are highly food-motivated. As long as you are able to successfully mask the look and smell of medicine, most pets will happily gobble up whatever you’re trying to give them. And if peanut butter gobs or chicken meat bundles aren’t their jam, look no further than the ingeniousness of modern-day pill pockets.
Masking the scent of unsavory, bitter, or bland medication is as easy as inserting a pill into a pocket of tasty goodness. Greenies Pill Pockets are always a safe bet. Simply squeeze the treat around a pill and watch the magic go down!
Sure, some pets don’t think twice about eating garbage or feces, but try to give them a pill and they turn up their nose.
- Show them a pill in one hand.
- Let them sniff it.
- Cover up another pill in a squished up gob of grated cheddar or unsweetened peanut butter.
- Give them a choice to either eat the pill straight, or the delicious treat that happens to be medication in disguise.
You can try grinding up the pills into a powder and sprinkling it on their food, but make sure to check with your veterinarian first. This method can have mixed results (and it’s crucial they get their full dose every time).
Watch and Learn
If pill pockets don’t work, and they aren’t taking the bait on any other treats, use a pill dispenser or gently use your own hands:
- Place the pill between your thumb and forefinger.
- Gently pull back on your pet’s head to straighten out their neck.
- Open their mouth and carefully drop the pill at the back of the throat (where the back of the tongue meets the palate).
- Sweetly rub the throat in a downwards motion to help the pill go down.
Please let your Leon Valley Veterinary Hospital team know if you need help with pill pockets or other methods for safe, successful medication administration. Some prescriptions can be given trans-dermally or in compounds from special pharmacies.
The relationship between you and your pet will stay strong when you give them great alternatives for taking medicine or supplements they need. Good luck!
If your pet has had surgery, likely you’ve left the hospital with a long list of home care instructions. Once your pet leaves the operating room and is on her way home, it’s up to you to help make her more comfortable using these instructions, so that the healing process can begin.
But this responsibility can be daunting, and there are common questions that arise after surgery. Since we all want to make sure our pet is as comfortable as can be, Leon Valley Veterinary Hospital is spending some time talking about these frequently asked questions, and how to best care for your pet after surgery.
Common Questions About Caring for Your Pet After Surgery
It can be scary, loading your pet up in the car and heading home after a major surgery. You are expected to help him recover, but you may not feel all that prepared to do so. At Leon Valley Veterinary Hospital, we know that feeling confident helping your furry family member heal is important for you. We are here for you during the time before, during, and after a pet surgery.
How to Prepare to Bring Your Pet Home
During recovery, your pet should have a quiet, comfortable place to rest that is dry and clean. Be sure to prepare an area with food and water, and an easy to access place to relieve himself. A crate can make a great recovery den, if your pet is used to using one.
The area should be free of obstacles, such as stairs, that may pose a safety hazard to a pet who is under the influence of medications. Block off any potentially dangerous areas with a childproof gate or doors. Continue…