VET’S VIEW: Being a responsible owner...

An important part of responsible pet ownership, neutering not only stops your pet having unwanted litters, but can also prevent potential behavioural, medical and surgical problems, such as breast cancer and

womb infections. But what happens to our pets when they have their operation?

“Neutering” describes sterilisation of both sexes: in males, the removal of both testicles (castration); in females, commonly both ovaries and uterus (spaying). On arrival at your vet, patients are weighed, checked over, testicles (if male) counted, and temperature taken.

Patients must be starved overnight, decreasing likelihood of vomiting and inhaling food into lungs whilst asleep under anaesthetic.

After signing a consent form, your pet is admitted and given a pre-med – drugs reducing anaesthetic agent needed, giving smoother induction and recovery, as well as making animals much easier to handle for intravenous injections.

Blood tests are recommended for older pets.

Anaesthetised patients are intubated – a long rubber pipe is carefully inserted into the lungs and gas pumped in, maintaining sufficient anaesthetic depth. The surgical site is then clipped and disinfected.

As with most operations, techniques vary – male cats castrated via simple incisions; female cats (queens) often spayed via keyhole on the left flank, usually requiring a few stitches to close.

Rabbits can also be neutered, allowing them to live happily together without fighting or breeding.

After full anaesthetic recovery, your pet is sent home to rest with a light diet and any appropriate treatments, e.g., buster collar, pain relief to prevent any licking or nibbling of wounds.

At Grove Lodge Vets, we take great care of your pet when you trust us with his/her neutering operation.

For more information, call 01903 234866 or log on to the website www.grovelodgevets.co.uk

Vet’s View is written by Marc Abraham of Grove Lodge Vets