Neutering, the removal of a male dog’s reproductive organs, is one of the most common and routine surgeries performed by veterinarians. It's generally safe and successful, but it's not without risk. Learning about neutering surgery and recovery will help reduce the anxiety of dropping your dog off at your veterinarian’s office.
Your veterinarian will most likely want you to check in your dog early in the morning. Unless he has told you differently, you’ll need to withhold food after midnight the night before the surgery to reduce the threat of vomiting from the anesthetic. He’ll take your dog's temperature and listen to the dog's heart and lungs; he may do a more thorough exam. He may have you sign a consent form before he takes your friend to the kennel area.
The doctor or technician will administer a sedative to calm your dog, then an injection of pre-anesthetic that will allow the doctor to put a tube down your dog’s throat to create an airway. Your dog will be hooked up to an anesthetic machine that delivers an inhaled anesthetic during the surgery. After shaving and applying an antiseptic to the surgical area, the doctor will begin the neutering operation.
It generally takes no more than 15 or 20 minutes to remove the testicles and suture the incision. Afterward, your dog is taken to a recovery room. He’ll be given a pain killer to make him comfortable as he wakes up from the anesthesia. If there are no complications, you can typically pick up your dog late that afternoon.
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