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Feline Surgery

Understanding Why Surgery has been Recommended for your Cat

There may arise a circumstance when a surgical procedure is in the best interest of your feline friend.

If surgery is being recommended, your veterinarian will have sound medical reasoning, and it is important that you understand what surgical procedure is being recommended and why, how the procedure will be performed, and when it should take place.

There are two categories of surgeries, elective and urgent/emergency.

Elective cat surgeries include:

Urgent cat surgeries include:

  • Skin lacerations or abscess
  • Intestinal obstruction from a foreign body
  • Skin cancers
  • Fracture repair

We Follow The Highest Standards of Veterinary Care

We are committed to the highest standards of excellence in veterinary medicine. Prior to surgery, the veterinary team verifies the specifics of the procedure, completes a physical exam of the patient, and ensures blood tests have been completed, documented, and reviewed by the veterinarian. Among other things, these precautions help determine if your pet is at risk for complications while under general anesthesia.

Elective surgeries are performed when your cat generally is considered healthy, thereby greatly reducing possible complications. And even urgent cat surgeries carry significantly lower risks due to improvements in modern medicine and vast improvements in the standards of veterinary care. Thanks to an extensive list of pre-surgical procedures such as exams, premedication, introduction of fluids, pain control, and monitoring of vital signs; as well as improved protocols during surgery including high-level monitoring equipment of vital signs such as body temperature, heart rate, blood pressure, CO2 levels, and oxygen levels.

Making the Decision to Proceed with Surgery

The decision to do surgery involves a discussion with the owner about possible complications and all factors to be considered when deciding what is best for your cat.

Factors to think about when considering surgery include:

  • Age and general health of the cat
  • Potential complications from the surgery
  • Potential outcome if surgery is not done
  • Recovery time and post op care required by the owner

While the decision to have your cat undergo surgery is completely in your hands, our veterinarians will do their best to make sure you feel supported with information to make the best decision. We are here to help you make an informed and compassionate decision that is in the best interest of your cat.

Pre-Surgical Instructions

Pre-surgical instructions vary depending on the type of procedure being performed and whether or not the surgery is emergency or planned.

However, we will provide you with a set of pre-surgical instructions that can be used as a general guideline for preoperative preparations.

These include:

  • Fasting your cat the night before surgery. We advise no food after Midnight the night prior to your cat's surgery. Minimal water is OK.
  • Be on time for your ca'ts surgery.
  • Listen carefully to post surgical instruction from your veterinary care team and call the hospital if you have any questions regarding the post op care for your cat.

Anesthesia for Cats

Safe anesthesia for cats requires that close attention be paid to the patient before, during, and after the anesthetic. We treat every cat according to its specific medical and surgical needs, and anesthesia is tailored to each patient. We adhere to very stringent guidelines for administering anesthesia before, during, and if necessary, after surgery.

Anesthesia is extremely safe when the patients are stabilized before the procedure and all effort is made to have a good understanding of the cat's medical condition before surgery. There is always some risk to anesthesia, however, the risk is extremely low when being performed by a highly qualified veterinarian and surgical team.

Recovery from surgery depends upon the type of surgery that was performed, the length of the surgery, the age of the cat, and the amount of pain medication required to keep your cat free from any post operative pain.

Some things to be aware of post anesthesia include:

  • It is normal for your cat to be groggy or disoriented for a few hours after receiving a general anesthetic
  • Your cat might sleep deeper or longer for 24 hours after receiving anesthesia
  • Your cat might be a duller version of itself for 24 hours after anesthesia due to the sedating effects of anesthesia
  • Review with your veterinarian any feeding and/or comfort tips they can provide

Always remember to call us if you have any questions about your cat's recovery.

Post-Surgical Care for Cats

We will tailor all post surgical instructions for your cat depending upon the procedure and your cat's needs. However, we will provide you with a set of cat surgery recovery instructions that can be used as a general guideline for postoperative care. Make sure you have a good understanding of post surgical instructions.

  • For routine procedures, most cats can go home a few hours after waking up from anesthesia
  • For advanced or emergency procedures, extended stays of 24 hours or longer may be necessary in order to monitor vital signs and deliver critical care

Some things to review at pick up time include:

  • The administering of medication, food, and water
  • The changing of bandages, care of stitches, etc.
  • Follow up appointment scheduling

At-Home Care

  • Allow your cat to recover in a warm, quiet space of its choosing to increase comfort and reduce stress
  • For the first 24 hours, monitor your cat closely as it recovers. Always call if you have any concerns
  • Keep cat indoors for at least 24 hours to supervise
  • Suture care (stitches): Most surgeries will require sutures. Your veterinary staff will review with you the after-care which will include keeping the cat from licking the incision site
    • Some cats will be sent home with an "E-Collar" to ensure they do not lick or bite out the sutures
    • Monitor the incision for possible signs of infection which will include redness or swelling
  • Continue to follow your cat's recovery program until told to alter or discontinue it by your veterinarian

Schedule an Appointment to discuss Surgical options for your Cat!

Call us directly or schedule an appointment online.

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