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At your discharge appointment you will receive detailed written post-operative care instructions from your surgeon for your pet. These will be reviewed with you by our discharge nurse prior to your pet going home. We will also review any medications that are needed, their dosing frequency, and when the next dose is due. Any questions you have regarding your pet’s after-care will be addressed at this appointment as well. The following instructions are intended to give you some idea of what recovery will entail so you may ready your home in preparation of their arrival.

Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy (TPLO)

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for approximately two to three months. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes the first two weeks. At suture removal the surgeon will discuss increasing walks and physical therapy.. However your pet will not be able to be free in the yard (off leash) until radiographs are performed that reveal healing of the bone.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Some dogs may require sling support initially for any steps and/or for walking. This can be accomplished by using a towel or heavy scarf (depending on the size of your pet) or purchasing a commercial sling from MVA, online, or a pet store.

Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

Your pet may or may not have a bandage on the leg; a cover for the bandage will be provided to keep it dry when outside if needed. An Elizabethan collar will also be provided to keep your pet from licking or traumatizing the bandage and/or incision. The collar should be worn at all times until advised by the doctor it is ok to be removed. Once the bandage has been removed your pet will be somewhat unsteady on the leg for a few days and should avoid slippery surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside.

Lateral Suture (CCL)

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for approximately 6-8 weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes during the first two weeks. At suture removal the surgeon will discuss adding some short walks and physical. Your pet will not be able to be free in the yard (off leash) for approximately two months.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Some dogs may require sling support initially for any steps and/or for walking. This can be accomplished by using a towel or heavy scarf (depending on the size of your pet) or purchasing a commercial sling from MVA, online, or a pet store.

Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

Your pet may or may not have a bandage on the leg; a cover for the bandage will be provided to keep it dry when outside if needed. An Elizabethan collar will also be provided to keep your pet from licking or traumatizing the bandage and/or incision. The collar should be worn at all times until advised by the doctor it is ok to be removed. Once the bandage has been removed your pet will be somewhat unsteady on the leg for a few days and should avoid slippery surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside.

Total Hip Replacement

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for approximately three months. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks. Detailed instructions regarding activity levels will be provided at discharge, however your pet will not be able to be free in the yard (off leash) for approximately three months.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Some dogs may require sling support initially for any steps and/or for walking, and should always be supported when on slippery floor surfaces. This can be accomplished by using a towel or heavy scarf (depending on the size of your pet) or purchasing a commercial sling from MVA, online, or a pet store.

Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

An Elizabethan collar will also be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until advised by the doctor it is ok to be removed. Your pet will be somewhat unsteady on the leg initially and should avoid slippery surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside.

Femoral Head Ostectomy

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for the first two weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other dogs is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks. Your pet will limp on the surgical leg and this should subside gradually as they get stronger. It is not uncommon for them not to bear weight for the first 7-10 days. At suture removal the surgeon will discuss adding walks and physical therapy as long as your pet is healing as expected. Activity will be encouraged to strengthen the Supportive musculature and to maintain range of motion.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house initially, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

An Elizabethan collar will also be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until advised by the doctor it is ok to be removed. Initially your pet may be somewhat unsteady on the leg and should avoid slippery surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside.

Arthroscopy

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for 8-10 weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes. Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house initially, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

An Elizabethan collar will be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until the sutures are removed.

Fracture Repair

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted until healed. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks. At suture removal the surgeon will discuss adding some short walks and physical therapy as long as your pet is healing as expected. However your pet will not be able to be free in the yard (off leash) for approximately three months.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Some dogs may require sling support initially for any steps and/or for walking. This can be accomplished by using a towel or heavy scarf (depending on the size of your pet) or purchasing a commercial sling from MVA, online, or a pet store.

Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

Your pet may or may not have a bandage on the leg; a cover will be provided to keep it dry when outside if needed. An Elizabethan collar will also be provided to keep your pet from licking or traumatizing the bandage and/or incision. The collar should be worn at all times until advised by the doctor it is ok to be removed. Once the bandage has been removed your pet will be somewhat unsteady on the leg for a few days and should avoid slippery surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside.

Hemilaminectomy (Ruptured disk in the Back)

Your pet may not be able to walk at first following back surgery, but should slowly regain the ability to use their legs. You should notice your pet is gradually beginning to move the legs a little more each week until they are able to walk. A sling can be very helpful initially in getting your pet out to the bathroom and for encouraging some use of the legs. This can be accomplished by using a towel or heavy scarf (depending on the size of your pet) or purchasing a commercial sling from MVA, online, or a pet store.

Your pet will need to be exercise restricted for at least six weeks following surgery. Even if your pet is able to walk there should be no running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets. Leash walks only for elimination purposes. Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house initially, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Your pet should avoid slippery floor surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside

Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. Commercial X-pens or dog play yards can be useful to confine your pet safely as well. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night. They will need a well-padded bed to prevent pressure sores from developing while they regain mobility.

An Elizabethan collar will be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until the sutures are removed.

Ventral Slot (Ruptured disk in the Neck)

Your pet may not be able to walk at first following neck surgery, but should slowly regain the ability to use their legs. You should notice your pet is gradually beginning to move the legs a little more each week until they are able to walk. A sling can be very helpful in getting your pet out to the bathroom and for encouraging some use of the legs. This can be accomplished by using a towel or heavy scarf (depending on the size of your pet) or purchasing a commercial sling from MVA, online, or a pet store.

Your pet will need to be exercise restricted for at least eight weeks following surgery. Even if your pet is able to walk there should be no running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets. Leash walks only for elimination purposes. Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house initially, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. A harness instead of a leash should be used indefinitely, do not use a collar to walk your pet. Your pet should avoid slippery floor surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside

Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. Commercial X-pens or dog play yards can be useful to confine your pet safely as well. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night. They will need a well-padded bed to prevent pressure sores from developing.

Amputation

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for the first two weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks. A sling can be very helpful in getting your pet out to the bathroom and for balance support. This can be accomplished by using a towel or heavy scarf (depending on the size of your pet) or purchasing a commercial sling from MVA, online, or a pet store.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house initially, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night. Your pet should avoid slippery floor surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside

An Elizabethan collar will be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until the sutures are removed.

Abdominal Surgery

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for the first two weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house initially, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

Depending on the type of surgery, your pet may go home with a drain to prevent accumulation of fluid. Maintaining the drain will be dependent on type of drain, and will be reviewed at discharge.

An Elizabethan collar will be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until the sutures are removed.

Laryngeal Paralysis (Tie Back)

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for the first two weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks.

Your pet will need soft canned food for the next 2 weeks, no bones, biscuits or chew toys are allowed. Some coughing is not uncommon following this surgery but your pet will need to be monitored for excessive coughing, trouble breathing or a blue-ish color to the tongue or gums.

Since one side of the larynx is tied open dogs have a small, life-time risk of developing aspiration pneumonia at some stage in the future. If at any point in the future your pet starts coughing or breathing heavily they should be evaluated by your veterinarian and have a chest x-ray taken. Due to the risk of aspiration we also recommend that you do not allow your pet to swim.

Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for the first two weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only, and for elimination purposes only for the first two weeks.

Your pet will need soft canned food for the next 2 weeks, no bones, biscuits or chew toys are allowed. Some coughing is not uncommon following this surgery but your pet will need to be monitored for excessive coughing, trouble breathing or a blue-ish color to the tongue or gums.

An Elizabethan collar will be provided, if needed, to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until the sutures are removed.

Mennisectomy

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for approximately four weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks. Your pet will limp on the surgical leg and this should subside gradually as they get stronger.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house initially, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

Your pet may or may not have a bandage on the leg; a cover will be provided to keep it dry when outside if needed. An Elizabethan collar will also be provided to keep your pet from the bandage and/or incision. The collar should be worn at all times until advised by the doctor it is ok to be removed. Once the bandage has been removed your pet will be somewhat unsteady on the leg for a few days and should avoid slippery surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside.

Medial Patella Luxation/Lateral Patella Luxation

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for approximately six weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks. At suture removal the surgeon will discuss adding some short walks and physical therapy as long as your pet is healing as expected.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Some dogs may require sling support initially for any steps and/or for walking. This can be accomplished by using a towel or heavy scarf (depending on the size of your pet) or purchasing a commercial sling from MVA, online, or a pet store.

Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

Your pet may or may not have a bandage on the leg; a cover will be provided to keep it dry when outside if needed. An Elizabethan collar will also be provided to keep your pet from the bandage and/or incision. The collar should be worn at all times until advised by the doctor it is ok to be removed. Once the bandage has been removed your pet will be somewhat unsteady on the leg for a few days and should avoid slippery surfaces. Inexpensive bath or yoga mats can be helpful at pivot points on slippery floor surfaces to provide some traction when walking to go outside.

Total Ear Canal Ablation/Lateral Bullae Osteotomy

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for the first two weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks.

Depending on the type of surgery, your pet may go home with a drain to prevent accumulation of fluid. Maintaining the drain will be dependent on type of drain, and will be reviewed at discharge. The incision line will need to be monitored for excessive swelling, drainage or discomfort.

An Elizabethan collar will be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until the sutures are removed.

Mass Removal

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for the first two weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house initially, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

An Elizabethan collar will be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until the sutures are removed. Depending on the location of the mass(s) a T-shirt can be used to cover the incision and to keep your pet from the sutures as well. Depending on the type of surgery, your pet may go home with a drain to prevent accumulation of fluid. Maintaining the drain will be dependent on type of drain, and will be reviewed at discharge.

Thoracotomy

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for the first two weeks. No running, jumping, ball chasing, or playing with other pets is allowed. Leash walks only for elimination purposes for the first two weeks.

Your pet will be unable to do full flights of stairs in the house initially, although a few steps to the outside can be navigated on a leash. Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them. A baby gate can be helpful for stopping access to steps as well as to confine them in a room with you when you can be with them. They should not have access to get up on sofas or beds while healing; turning up the cushions or blocking access with a table can be helpful for sofas. Pets should not be allowed to sleep in the bed while healing as they may decide to jump down in the middle of the night.

An Elizabethan collar will be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar should be worn at all times until the sutures are removed. A T-shirt can also be used to cover the incision and to keep your pet from the sutures as well. Depending on the type of surgery, your pet may go home with a drain to prevent accumulation of fluid. Maintaining the drain will be dependent on type of drain, and will be reviewed at discharge.

Perineal Urethrostomy (PU)

After surgery your pet’s activity will need to be modified and restricted for the first two weeks. No running, jumping, or playing with other pets is allowed. Your pet will need to be confined when you are not at home or when you are sleeping, and restricted when you are able to be with them. A crate or small room without access to furniture is useful for confining your pet when you are unable to watch them.

You will need to monitor you pet’s urination for the first few weeks, and Yesterday’s News litter is preferable to avoid litter clumping around the surgery site. An Elizabethan collar will be provided to keep your pet from the incision. The collar must be worn at all times until the sutures are removed because significant damage to the surgery site can occur if it is licked.

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