Best Post-Surgery Practices for Your Pet

Many pet owners ask about the time it takes to recover their pets following cat or dog surgery. Unfortunately, there isn’t a universally-fit-all routine. It is contingent on numerous factors such as age, fitness and health, and the type of procedure.

Make sure to remember that just because your pet’s cut has healed and the swelling has decreased doesn’t mean they’re totally healed. The healing process follows a fairly regular schedule of events, with specific tissues healing quicker while others take longer. Full recovery might take anywhere from six weeks to four months, contingent on the type of surgery. For a safe and complete recovery, it’s essential to provide post-operative treatment that includes progressive rehabilitation.

How to Help Your Pet Recover Fast After Surgery

A veterinarian or board-certified vet surgeon will give you an estimate of the time it will take your pet to heal. To help your pet quickly recover, you must adhere to specific post-operative guidelines. These are some guidelines that can help you take care of your pet.

Maintain a Medication Routine

You must keep in mind the exact time when you have to give them their medication and stick to the timetable. The discomfort that comes after surgery can be eased with the help of pain relievers. However, the healing process is slow if the pain is not controlled. Your pet can receive one to three types of painkillers based on the type of surgery. In addition, anti-anxiety medication may be prescribed if necessary to allow your pet to focus on healing. To prevent and treat infection, it is recommended to administer antibiotics in specific circumstances. If not otherwise directed by a vet, all antibiotics must be issued.

Use an E-collar (aka “Cone of Shame”)

Allowing your pet to apply a lick to their incisions for only one minute increases the risk of infection or opens the wound. Therefore, the E-collar is generally only necessary during the first two weeks following surgery.

Restrict Activity

You must keep your pet in a small space that has carpeted floors. They should not climb up on furniture or wander around the home. This is the best place to let your pet relax if they’re already in crate training. You may want to keep your dog connected to you when you are at home. Unless you’re advised otherwise by your vet, you can only take your pet on walks with a leash. You should be able to monitor your pet’s movements at all stages of recovery. Instructions for post-operative care will define the length of the restrained period of activity.

Practice Proper Wound Management

Be aware of signs such as excessive redness, swelling, and bleeding. If you notice your pet suffering from these symptoms, don’t hesitate to contact your veterinarian. Unless your veterinarian instructs you otherwise, you will not need to clean or apply any ointment to the wound. Instead, we suggest applying an ice pack over the incision a few times per day for a few minutes every time for the first few days following surgery. Ice reduces inflammation and aids in the relief of post-surgery discomfort.

Control Your Pet’s Emotions

Your pet may be experiencing anxiety or pain by whining, pacing, digging, and excessive meowing and barking. Spend more time with your pet while you’re at home, and ensure they are part of the family. Keep them in a quiet room when you’re not home, possibly with television or music.

Carolina Veterinary Specialists in Matthews offers a range of surgical procedures to address orthopedic and soft tissue problems. Based on your pet’s needs, their surgeons will conduct a thorough examination and discuss the appropriate testing methods, treatments, and the risks and anticipated outcomes with each of you. Visit this emergency vet in Matthews NC for more details.


As mentioned above, total recovery times vary based upon the surgical procedure. Regaining the competitive status that dogs and athletes had before surgery may take as long as a year. It can take longer to bring your pet back to the pace than the slow, steady rehab.