Thank you for entrusting us with the care of your pet. The Big Creek Pet Hospital team has been involved in 1000’s of successful procedures. However, there is always a small risk of complications during the surgery or recovery. To minimize problems, we follow these steps when doing a surgery or dental procedure-using anesthesia. If you have any questions about the specific procedure we are doing for your pet please ask us.
Things you should do before the procedure – The night before a procedure take your pet’s food away; we recommend no later than 8 pm. Water is okay. If your pet is on a daily medication. ask us beforehand whether your pet should receive it the morning of the procedure. We will ask you during check-in, whether your pet received medication and, if so, what. Be calm during the trip here, your pet can sense stress and get stressed themselves.
After your pet has been checked-in, the medical team will go through the following steps.
Step 1 – Examination & Testing
Your pet is examined prior to their procedure, to ensure that they are healthy enough for the procedure.
We also strongly recommend that blood work be done prior to any anesthetic procedure and is required for all pets 7 years and older. Pre-anesthesia blood work allows us to evaluate your pet for any underlying problems that may require us to modify our anesthetic or surgical plans (Click here to go to the Pre-Anesthesia Blood Work page). Most dogs undergoing surgery where there is a possibility of major bleeding will also get a Coagulation test which checks for your pet’s blood ability to clot.
Step 2 – Pain Meds prior to surgery
Prior to most surgeries, your pet will be given pain medications. These are used to help relax your pet before receiving anesthesia and also to minimize pain to the area being operated on. (Ex. Declaws receive a “Ring Block” that deadens the feeling to the paws.)
Step 3 – Surgery Prep
The procedure begins in our Treatment area. We are going to shave a small area on your pet’s leg for the IV. Your pet will receive Isofluorane gas anesthesia. (Isofluorane is very safe and is used for many human surgeries.) If needed, the surgical area will be prepared by shaving the fur down to the skin.
Step 4 – Actual Procedure
All invasive surgeries (such as spays, abdominal exploratory, and orthopedics) are done in our sterile Surgery Suite, using aseptic technique (mask and gloves). Minor/non-invasive procedures are done in the Treatment Area. During the procedure, monitoring equipment will be hooked up to your pet to give us continual vital signs. A Registered Veterinary Technician assists the Doctor and monitors your pet during both the surgery and recovery. If desired, you can watch your pet’s surgery. Please let us know ahead of time so we can schedule a mutually agreeable time.
Step 5 – Recovery
After the procedure is completed, your pet will be transferred to a recovery area where we can monitor your pet. We will be watching your pet to ensure there are no post-surgical complications. You can expect a call from one of the medical staff when your pet is in recovery. They will let you know how the procedure went and set-up a discharge appointment for you. (In the event that you do not receive a phone call by 4:00 pm, please call us.)
Step 6 – Discharge
When you come to pick up your pet, we will escort you to one of our exam rooms to discuss the surgery and post-surgery instructions. During the discharge we will explain how the surgery or dental went along with explaining how much food your pet can receive the night following the procedure, exercise restrictions, special needs, and what you should be watching your pet for. You will also receive a written report reiterating these items (click here to see a sample Surgical Release Report). Finally, we will go over your invoice and receive payment.
Step 7 – Post-Surgical Follow-up
We will call you the business day following a procedure to check on your pet and answer any questions you may have since the discharge. If you have any concerns or questions about your pet and the procedure call us ((440) 234-5831).