Preparing Your Pet for Surgery: A Short and Simple Guide

It can be challenging to bring animals in for surgery. Here is a comprehensive guide on what you should do before your pet’s surgery.

What should pet parents know before the surgery?

How do you feel when your pet undergoes surgery? Even if your pet is experiencing a routine operation, “emotional” probably best describes how you think, as leaving the clinic without your pet is the worst possible scenario. However, knowing that your pet is receiving the best care is reassuring.

What are the various types of surgery?

At some point, your pet may require three types of surgery. The procedure you select for your pet may involve spaying or neutering. A surgical procedure, such as tumor removal, recommended by your veterinarian for your pet’s health and well-being is not optional but can be planned.

Surgical intervention is available if your pet is injured or involved in a fight with another animal. In the worst-case scenario, you will need additional time and their contact info to prepare your pet for surgery, but you will still need to be aware of how to care for it as it recovers.

How should your pet prepare for surgery?

Help your veterinarian by providing the best possible pre-operative care for your pet. Although the surgery is sterile, you would be surprised by the number of filthy dogs brought in for treatment. Before shaving, the animal is naturally cleaned and clipped.

However, if your pet’s level of cleanliness is “muddy,” it will require unneeded anesthesia to become sufficiently clean to bathe. It’s where maturity enters the picture. What you do (or do not do) 24 hours before your pet’s surgery can affect the procedure’s safety.

To prevent problems from arising, it is crucial that your pet receives preventive care from a good pet vacciantion clinic. To learn more about preventive care, speak with your veterinarian.

The pet must fast for the procedure.

You are in charge of a potentially fatal circumstance. Never feed your pet on the morning of surgery unless otherwise advised by your veterinarian. This rule applies to felines and canines alike. Guinea pigs and rabbits, for instance, should never fast before surgery.

Due to the inability to swallow during anesthesia, dogs and cats must be empty before receiving anesthesia. If the stomach contracts and forces vomit into the mouth, a dog or cat cannot consume it. Without a tube, they risk aspirating vomit into their lungs.

Inhaled vomit causes two problems:

  • The patient subsequently suffocates due to airway obstruction.
  • Stomach acid that enters the lungs can cause pneumonia.

You can easily avoid this by restricting your pet food overnight.

  • The conventional recommendation is to consume your last meal the day before, preferably before 10 p.m.
  • You can leave water in the bowl overnight, but you must remove it by 7 a.m.
  • You should not provide them with breakfast and snacks.
  • No treats on the morning of the operation.

Consult your veterinarian for specific instructions if your pet has a medical condition that makes dietary restrictions difficult (such as diabetes). Gastric reflux can still occur in anesthetized animals with an empty stomach, but the risk of severe side effects is reduced.

While under anesthesia, the stomach’s valves are also relaxed. It is common for stomach acid to leak into the esophagus while an animal is sleeping. If the procedure is completed quickly, the esophageal’s natural defenses prevent acid from damaging the delicate tissue.

For more lengthy procedures, your pet may experience symptoms similar to heartburn. Symptoms following surgery include drooling, vomiting after eating, and appetite loss. Typically, anti-acid medications are effective in treating it.

If you’re ever looking for equine veterinary, you should always ask your veterinarian for recommendations.


You may wish to starve your pet before surgery. Remember that your veterinarian has procedures to anticipate problems such as gastric reflux, reducing the risk of harm. However, let us avoid adding stress or difficulty to our lives that is not necessary.