Please note we will be closed on bank holiday Monday, click here for more information on how to access our services. Please note our out of hours care is now supported by Medivet in Watford.

How long will my pet stay with you on the day of the procedure?

Generally, all animals will be admitted between 8:15 am and 9 am and most pets will be discharged the same day either late afternoon or evening. This is providing there are no medical reasons while your pet needs to stay with us longer for further care.  The early admit time allows us to reassess your pet prior to their procedure; perform any bloodwork required or start intravenous fluid therapy prior to an aesthetic/sedation.  We keep your pet in for several hours post their procedure as this allows us to assess their post-procedure pain levels and provide additional pain relief if required.  It also allows your pet more time to recover from their procedure before going home.

Why would my pet need a pre-anaesthetic blood test?

We usually recommend animals to have a pre-anaesthetic blood test when they are over the age of 7 years. This blood test assesses their general organ function and acts as a screen for underlying disease, allowing us to adjust anaesthetic drugs accordingly.

How long should my pet be starved for prior to a sedation or general anaesthetic?

Your pet should not eat anything past midnight the night before their procedure. Otherwise, there is a risk that your pet may vomit under anaesthesia and accidentally inhale their stomach contents which can cause an aspiration pneumonia.  However, it is recommended to feed a snack or their last meal at around 10-11pm to reduce the time they are starved for. Although, they are allowed to have their water over night.  Please note rabbits MUST NOT be starved.

Why is it important that my dog has is up to date with their lungworm treatment before surgery?

Without lungworm treatment, there is a small risk that your pet could be infected with lungworm. Lungworm causes clotting issues in the blood and therefore increases the risk of uncontrolled bleeding during surgery.  The products we supply that prevent lungworm in dogs are Prinovox and Nexgard Spectra.  These products also protect against fleas and other parasites.

Can my pet be microchipped at the same time as being neutered?

Yes, this is usually recommended especially in cats (as dogs are legally required to be microchipped at 8 weeks old). There is a 10% discount on the microchip price when it is done in addition to neutering.  Other pets, such as rabbits, can also be microchipped).

How will I stop my pet from licking/chewing any stitches or their wound?

After any procedure where your pet may have a wound or stitches in place, it is vital to prevent them from being able to lick or chew the area to allow healing and stop infection. We have two options to choose from to prevent this.

Buster collar- this is the ‘lamp shade’ collar that goes around their head and stops them from being able to reach any areas on their body with their mouth. It is important to note that cats must not be allowed outside with this on.

Medical Pet Shirt- this is almost like a baby grow that covers the wound completely, therefore not allowing them to reach the area with their mouth. It is important to note that for dogs the medical pet shirt must be undone whenever your pet goes to the toilet and must be washed immediately if soiled to prevent infection.

Please note that pets cope differently with each product and in some cases owners may wish to take both.  Your vet or nurse may also advise that one of the above is not suitable for your pet if they are having a certain procedure.

What are the risks involved with surgery/general anaesthesia?

With any surgery/anaesthetic/sedation there is always a small risk of loss of life.  Our experienced staff take every precaution to reduce these risks for your pet.  Various monitoring equipment is used throughout every procedure to monitor your pet's heart rate and rhythm, blood pressure, breathing rate, oxygen and carbon dioxide levels and temperature. Other potential risks include wound breakdown, swelling, bleeding, seroma (a collection of fluid) and infection.  If your pet is undergoing a procedure please discuss any potential concerns you may have with your vet at the pre-op check.

What are my pets' exercise limitations following surgery?

Post-surgery it is generally advised to restrict exercise to short lead walks for toilet purposes only for the next 14 days. This also includes limiting playing at home with other dogs or family. This can greatly vary depending on the type of procedure and your vet will advise you otherwise if your pet needs to follow a different exercise regimen.

What should I feed my pet following surgery/general anaesthetic?

Following a general anaesthetic or sedation it is recommended to feed your pet a bland diet in small but more frequent portions.  This will allow your pet to digest their food better and reduce the chance of vomiting and diarrhea post-procedure. With any general anaesthetic our patients are sent home with tins/sachets of Hills ID food.  Alternatively, plain chicken and rice are also recommended.  If your pet is fed a special prescription diet, please check with your vet first as in this situation they may advise differently.

How should I prepare for my pets procedure?

Please bath dogs ready for their procedure. This helps reduce their anaesthetic time while we clip their fur and prepare them for surgery.  It also helps reduce the risk of post-op infection by preventing dirty fur from other areas of the body from contaminating any surgical wounds.  As well as this please ensure they are up to date with their flea treatment as a lungworm preventative.

If I have other pets at home should I separate them after one has had a surgical procedure?

Some surgical procedures will require for pets to be isolated or on cage rest however, there is no one answer that fits all procedures. Please ask the vet as soon as possible what your pet's recovery requirements will be to allow enough time to prepare for this.


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Chess Veterinary Clinic Surgeries

Rickmansworth Surgery 97 Uxbridge Road Rickmansworth Hertfordshire WD3 7DJ
Opening Hours Mon - Fri: 8.00am - 8.00pm Sat: 9.00am - 6.00pm Sun & Bank Hols: Closed
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Chorleywood Surgery 1B New Parade Chorleywood Rickmansworth Hertfordshire WD3 5NJ
Opening Hours Mon & Fri: 9.00am - 7.00pm Tue - Thur: 9.00am - 5.00pm Sat: Closed Sun & Bank Hols: Closed
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