Why Neutering Your Dog is Important
Though it may not feel like a pressing priority in the moment, having your dog neutered soon after you bring your pup home is worth it - both for you as a loving dog parent and for your beloved four-legged friend.
Getting your dog neutered not only prevents the risk of unwanted litters, it can also help to curb problematic or undesirable behaviors such as aggression, mounting, and roaming. There are also several potential preventive health benefits for your dog.
About 3.3 million dogs end up in shelters across the United States every year. Having your dog neutered is the best way for you to help reduce the overall number of unwanted pets in your neighborhood.
Reproductive Surgeries are Common & Considered Safe for Dogs
Most vets have lots of experience neuter surgeries, as these are very common veterinary medical procedures.
These surgeries are generally considered very safe for both dogs and cats. That said, there is some risk involved whenever an animal is placed under anesthesia for a procedure. Your vet and surgical team will closely monitor your dog throughout the procedure and watch for any signs of illness or potential complications as they arise.
The Difference Between Spay & Neuter Surgery
'Spaying' and 'neutering' refer to surgical procedures that cause your pet to be unable to produce puppies. In many places, both types of procedures may be referred to as 'neutering' or 'fixing' your dog.
Spay: Spaying is the surgical sterilization of a female animal. Both ovaries and the uterus are removed while she is under general anesthesia.
Neuter: Male dogs are castrated or neutered, which involves the surgical removal of the testicles while the dog is under general anesthesia.
How to Comfort a Dog in Pain After Surgery
Your dog should experience a minimal amount of pain after surgery, but you'll likely want to help them rest and stay as comfortable as possible. Here are a few things you can do to help comfort your dog after they have been neutered:
- Prepare a quiet indoor space for your dog to recover, away from other animals and small children.
- Try and prevent your dog from jumping, running or climbing stairs for two weeks after their neuter. Following your vet's instructions closely regarding activity after these procedures, since your pup may require further restrictions.
- Even if you feel like your dog is looking sad, it's important to have them wear a post-operative jumpsuit (if your vet prescribed it) or cone to prevent them from licking their incision site. Lciking their surgical incision may lead to infection.
- For your dog's incision to heal as quickly as possible, do not bathe your dog (or allow your dog to swim) for at least ten days after spaying or neutering.
- Check your dog's incision site every day for possible signs of infection to ensure that their incision is healing well.
Contact your vet if you spot any redness, swelling or discharge at the incision site, or if the incision has opened. Symptoms such as lack of energy, reluctance to eat, vomiting or diarrhea also signal the need to call your vet.
How Long Will My Dog Be in Pain After Neutering?
When you pick your dog up from your vet's office after their surgery, your dog may seem a little tired, queasy or otherwise unlike their usual selves. These are pretty typical side effects of general anesthesia. The next day, your pet should start behaving more like themselves and show only very minor signs of pain.
The pain associated with spay or neuter surgeries is typically more of a discomfort and may last for just a few days and should be completely gone after about a week. If your pet is experiencing pain or discomfort for more than a couple of days, it's a good idea to contact your vet for further advice.
What Can I Give My Dog for Pain After Surgery?
During your dog's surgery, they will be placed under anesthesia and won't feel any pain. Once they wake up, our vets will provide them with further medication as required. Veterinarians Administer pain medications to your dog by injection. This long-lasting pain medication should last anywhere from 12 to 24 hours after surgery is complete.
Your vet will also prescribe any take-home pain meds they feel that your dog will need to help relieve post-operative pain. Some of the most common dog pain medications prescribed after spay or neuter surgery include Torbugesic or Rimadyl.
It's very important that you follow your veterinarian's instructions very closely when it comes to giving your dog pain medications after their neutering procedure. Make sure you never give your pup any human pain medications, either. Some pain medications that are designed for humans are incredibly toxic for dogs.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.