1, Mar 2023
How to Take Care of Your Pet Following Surgery

Regarding post-operative care, pets are no different from humans in this regard. There is no “one size fits all” strategy to pet care, but there are some things you can do to make your pet more comfortable. If you know what to do after your pet has surgery, you can help him recover quickly and without complications. Post-operative care for your pet is the topic of today’s blog.

Collect Contact Details

Always keep the contact information for your regular vet and the nearest emergency clinic (or surgeon or whatever specialty you may need on this page) close at hand. Don’t hesitate to call the vet if you have any concerns or questions. There are no dumb questions regarding your pet’s well-being; they are there to help.

Take Note of Discharge Instructions

Please read the discharge directions carefully. A member of staff should ideally take you through them sentence by sentence. Be sure to get your questions answered, take careful notes, and follow your doctor’s orders regarding when to begin taking medications and when to return for follow-up visits and suture removal. If possible, schedule your follow-up visits while you’re still at the clinic or the vet lab.

Care for Bandages

To prevent further injury, bandages and splints must be maintained sanitary. Keep them dry and clean, and get them changed as often as your vet suggests. They should be changed once a week, or more often if there is a problem. The main risk of wearing them for an extended time is developing pressure sores. Putting on a suitable bandage requires both scientific precision and artistic finesse. As such, only a veterinarian or a trained technician should do this procedure.

Each day, splints and bandages should be inspected for any signs of discomfort, swelling, or wetness/dampness, and any problems should be reported. Bandages and splints should be sealed in plastic to prevent moisture damage when your pet is outside.

Provide a Confined Space

It may be required to avoid doing things like jogging, jumping off of furniture (such as beds and sofas), and using the stairs, depending on the nature of the procedure. Always heed your vet’s recommendations, but remember that a cat recovering from eyelid surgery won’t have the same restrictions as a dog recovering from a broken bone.

How do you recommend securing your pet? Crates aren’t great, but if you have to use one (and it has to hold a St. Bernard and a Chihuahua). Cats and small dogs should be kept in an upside-down baby or puppy play cage, while large dogs and cats should be kept in a small, furniture-free area.

If you must keep your pet in a small space, at least ensure they have a soft bed, fresh water, food, and a litter box if they are cats.

Check the Incision

It’s important to inspect it every day for signs of infection, such as redness, swelling, bleeding, or seepage. Keeping the incision clean and dry is essential, as directed by your vet or nurse. Vets typically advise during routine examinations to gently wipe the area with warm tap water and a soft cloth or paper towel. To protect the stitches from being licked or eaten, please do not remove the plastic cone (Elizabethan collar or E-collar) from your pet. Your pet will get used to the cone more quickly if you are strict about keeping it on. And in the meantime, nobody will go crazy.


Your pet should begin to feel better and more energetic in a few days following surgery. However, this will vary by procedure. This is a good place to give your extra pet room to roam. Make sure your pet doesn’t get too excited. Your pet may require physical therapy. Plan to make sure you and your pet can participate in every session. Call your vet immediately if anything happens. In certain cases, getting better can take months. If you can maintain your composure, you should have success. It would be a shame to undo all your hard work by letting your pet resume its routine too soon.