Preparing to Spay/Neuter Your Dog? Read Fancy and Fiesta’s Story!

Preparing to Spay/Neuter Your Dog? Read Fancy and Fiesta’s Story!Wags & Wiggles | Fancy Gets Spayed

This spay/neuter article is based on personal experience – you should always consult with your veterinarian about your individual dog.

The time recently came to spay our girls Fancy (Sheltie, age 2) and Fiesta (Aussie, age 5). We wanted to do our best to minimize their discomfort and our anxiety.

We’re sharing some information with you so you can prepare for spaying or neutering your dog.

There are actually several different ways to spay a female dog. Removing both of the ovaries and uterus is called an ovariohysterectomy. This is the procedure most commonly used during a spay in the United States and is done through a surgical incision into the abdoment.

Another method is to remove only the ovaries, called an ovariohysterectomy or a laparoscopic spay. This procedure is less invasive than a traditional spay and is done by making several small incisions through the abdominal wall.

Factors to Consider:

When and how to get your dog spayed or neutered is a very personal decision.

One thing is to consider whether or not to let them have a heat cycle first. There have been some studies done on cancer risk and other factors relating to timing of altering your pet. Some factors to consider include:

  • Surgery is harder in older pets
  • Spaying can save your dog from deadly pyometra
  • If your breed is prone to bloat, consider getting their stomach tacked during surgery
  • Some dogs have behavior problems, like reactivity and resource guarding, that may warrant an earlier spay or neuter
  • Don’t spay or neuter during a fear period
  • Altering your pet may affect your home pack dynamics
  • Let’s face it – dealing with heat cycles in female dogs is not very enjoyable

Preparing for the Spay/Neuter Healing ProcessWags & Wiggles | Fiesta Gets Spayed

I have a veterinary background and have seen this process many times. When it came time to spay Fancy and Fiesta, one thing I knew for sure was that I didn’t want those hard plastic cones for my girls.

Since my husband and I planned for close supervision of our girls, we chose the Wonder Suit. We were very happy with how easy it was to take off the bottoms for potty time and how it protected the surgical site. The girls were also unable to lick the sutures.

Before we brought them home, we prepared a quiet area in our house with an x-pen and lots of comfy blankets. The girls practiced wearing their Wonder Suits and being in the pen before the big day. Lots of treats were involved, of course!

In addition to the Wonder Suit, we also got Comfy Cones in case we needed to leave the girls unsupervised for short periods of time.

Finally, we invested in a Nest Cam. This way when we needed to leave we could make sure they didn’t get their cones off or get too rambunctious. We could hear them and even talk to them if needed!

Preparing for the Spay/Neuter Healing ProcessWags & Wiggles | Puzzle Time

Before and after surgery consult, talk with your veterinarian about using homeopathic Arnica Montana to reduce pain and swelling. Luckily, our veterinarian already does this for their patients. However, don’t skip the pain medicines your vet prescribes!

Pets, just like humans, have a huge, wide range of reactions to surgery. Fiesta needed more pain medicine than Fancy. Fiesta was shaking and crying while Fancy was ready to run around, but of course that wasn’t allowed!

I am a huge fan of Martiscrub’s products for both myself and my dogs. We used the wound care gel on the incision site.

To boost their immune system, we added bone broth to both of their meals the first few days after surgery. It’s easy to make yourself, but there are several companies out there that make bone broth for dogs. Probiotics are another thing to consider adding to your dog’s meals.

No one got much sleep the first night after the surgery, but the girls started to feel better within a few days. That’s when the hardest part began – keeping 2 extremely active dogs quiet got pretty challenging! Luckily, we have a huge supply of puzzle toys and were able to keep their minds busy with clicker training. We brushed up on our tricks, mat stays, and recalls.

With some planning, spaying/neutering your dog can go smoothly! If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

3 Responses

  • It helped when you said to find ways to boost their immune system. My sister was at my house yesterday afternoon helping me in my garden, and she talked about how she wants to find a vet she can take her dog to so she can get spayed. I’ll pass this information along to her once she finds a vet so she can know more about the recovery process.

  • I have a puppy that just had her first heat cycle, and since it was very unexpected, so we weren’t able to spay her before it, but I’m interested in doing it soon. That’s why I’m glad you explained how you’d improve your dog’s comfort after the surgery and prepare your home for recovery, so I’ll definitely keep this in mind when the time comes. Thank you for the information on preparing your dogs for the surgery’s recovery.

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