Here at Sequist Animal Hospital our surgeon performs a variety of soft tissue surgical procedures as well as orthopedic surgery.
Soft tissue surgeries are primarily performed using a surgical laser. Laser surgery is performed using a laser instead of a scalpel to cut tissue. Laser surgery uses an intense beam of light to precisely cut tissue. This process seals blood vessels and nerve endings, resulting in less bleeding and pain as well as reduced swelling at the surgery site, reduced risk of infection, and a quicker recovery. Some of the common soft tissue surgeries that are performed include spays, castrations and mass removals. There are many other soft tissue procedures including gastrointestinal surgery, which could include removal of foreign objects or diseased sections of intestine, bladder surgery to remove stones, and splenectomy. Your veterinarian will discuss what your pet requires.
We also perform some orthopedic surgeries. If your pet experiences a knee ligament injury (for example, a cruciate ligament tear), procedures such as extracapsular repair may be recommended. If your pet breaks its leg, procedures such as pinning may be necessary to fix the fractured bones. If our veterinarians are unable to repair your pet’s orthopedic problem, they may recommend a referral to a specialized veterinary orthopedic surgeon. If you have additional questions, please call and ask our staff about which orthopedic services we offer.
Many people have questions about various aspects of their pet’s surgery, and we hope this information will help.
Is the anesthetic safe?
Anesthesia does bear some risks. Here at Sequist Animal Hospital, we do a thorough physical exam on your pet before administering anesthetics, this is to ensure that a fever or other illness won’t be a problem. We also adjust the amount and type of anesthetic used depending on the age and health of your pet. We have advanced anesthesia monitoring equipment and will make surgery as safe and efficient as possible.
Pre-anesthetic blood testing is important in reducing the risks of anesthesia. Bloodwork will help us understand how your pet will process the anesthetics. We recommend pre-anesthetic blood testing before the day of surgery. This will save you money and the doctors will have the information they need ahead of time. For geriatric or ill pets, additional blood tests, electrocardiograms, or x-rays may be recommended before surgery as well. If serious problems are detected, surgery can be postponed until the problem is corrected.
Will my pet have sutures?
For many surgeries, we use absorbable sutures underneath the skin. These will dissolve on their own, and do not need to be removed later. Some surgeries do require skin sutures or staples. With any incision, you will need to keep an eye on the surgery site for swelling or discharge.
Most dogs and cats do not lick excessively or chew at the incision, but we will provide you with an elizabethan collar to ensure the incision can heal quickly. If there are skin staples, these will usually be removed 10 to 14 days after surgery. You will also need to limit your pet’s activity level for a time and no baths until healing is complete.
Will my pet be in pain?
Anything that causes pain in people can be expected to cause pain in animals. For that reason pain medications may be prescribed. The pain medications given will depend on the surgery performed. Major procedures require more pain relief than things like minor lacerations. We will provide the pain relief that is most appropriate for your pets needs.
What other decisions do I need to make?
While your pet is under anesthesia, it is the ideal time to perform other minor procedures, such as dentistry, ear cleaning, or implanting an identification microchip. If you would like an estimate for these extra services, please call ahead of time. This is especially important if the person dropping the pet off for surgery is not the primary decision maker for the pet’s care.
When you bring your pet in for surgery, we will need time to fill out paperwork and make decisions on the other options available. When you pick up your pet after surgery you can also plan to spend time to go over your pet’s home care needs.
We will call you the night before your scheduled surgery appointment, to confirm the time you will be dropping your pet off and to answer any questions you might have. In the meantime, please don’t hesitate to call us with any questions about your pet’s health or surgery.