At Apex we recommend spaying female cats and dogs around 6 months of age. Spaying prior to the first heat cycle provides the most benefit as far as preventing reproductive based cancer down the road. Spaying refers to a surgery called an ovariohysterectomy. The procedure involves the removal of the ovaries and uterus via a minimal ventral midline incision on the belly. Spay patients will usually be kept in the veterinary hospital overnight. Click here for an example of a typical spay discharge sheet.
The incisions from these procedures are typically closed with subcutaneous and intradermal dissolvable sutures. Nonetheless an Elizabethan collar is necessary during the first 10 – 14 days of healing. If external sutures are used, they must be removed 10 – 14 days after surgery.
Expectations when having your pet spayed or neutered:
Our veterinarians perform a pre-surgical exam to evaluate your pet’s general health and to ensure they are healthy enough for general anesthesia and surgery. We may also require pre-operative blood work which screens your pet’s internal organ function. This gives our doctors the information needed to alter anesthetic protocols to ensure the safest anesthesia possible. Even if your pet is young both of these steps are important. The doctor may find an underlying disease that might not be otherwise diagnosed.
Spaying and neutering requires that your pet be under general anesthesia. A pre-anesthetic drug will be given both to relax your pet and to provide preemptive pain control. It is important that before, during, and after any surgical procedure that your pet is given pain medications. Controlling post-operative pain is important for the well-being and recovery of your pet. The doctor may wish to place an intravenous (IV) catheter to allow us direct access to your pet’s vein for pre-anesthetic medications, IV fluids, and any other medications that may be required during surgery and anesthesia.
Your pet will be monitored throughout the preanesthetic phase, surgery, and post- operative recovery by a trained technician who monitors heart rate, blood oxygen concentration, respirations, blood pressure, and body temperature. The technician constantly records all of your pet’s information to make certain they are maintaining appropriate levels of each. Your pet has a dedicated technician assigned to your pet until they are fully recovered from their surgery.
When you come to pick up your pet after their surgery, a technician will go over detailed written instructions that will help you to continue care until your pet is fully recovered.
Your pet’s health and safety is our number one concern. At Apex Animal Hospital we like to make your decision to spay or neuter as easy as possible. We have a dedicated well trained staff to help ensure the highest level of care of your pet.