Open mobile navigation

Surgery-FAQs

Surgery FAQs

Is the anesthetic safe?

Today's modern anesthetic monitors have made surgery much safer than in the past.  Here at River Ridge Animal Hospital we do a thorough physical exam on your pet before administering anesthetics.  We also adjust the amount and type of anesthetic used depending on the health of your pet.

Preanesthetic blood testing is important in reducing the risk of anesthesia.  we recommend this for every pet before surgery to ensure the liver and kidneys can handle the anesthetic.  Even apparently healthy animals can have serious organ system problems that cannot be detected without blood testing.  If there is a problem it is much better to find it before it causes anesthetic or surgical complications.  Animals that have minor dysfunction will handle the anesthetic better if they receive IV fluids during surgery.  If serious problems are detected, surgery can be postponed until the problem is corrected.

We offer in-house blood testing the day of surgery.  We recommend different panels depending on the age and health of your pet.  For geriatric or ill pets, additional blood tests, urine tests or radiographs may be required before surgery as well.

It is important that surgery be performed on an empty stomach to reduce the risk of vomiting during and after anesthesia.  You will need to withhold food for at least 8 to 10 hours before surgery.  Older pets may have water until the morning of surgery. 

Will my pet have sutures?

For many surgeries, we use absorbable sutures underneath the skin.  These will dissolve on their own and do not need to be removed later.  Some surgeries, especially tumor removals do require skin sutures.  With either type of suture, you will need to keep an eye on the incision for swelling or discharge.  If there are skin sutures, these will usually be removed 10 to 14 days after surgery.  You will also need to limit your pet's activity level for a time and no baths are allowed for the first 10 days after surgery. 

Will my pet be in pain?

Anything that causes pain in people can be expected to cause pain in animals.  Pets may not show the same symptoms of pain as people do; they usually don't whine or cry, but you can be sure they feel it.  The type and amount of pain medication needed depends on the surgery performed.  Major procedures require more pain relief than things like minor lacerations.

After surgery, pain medication is chosen on a case by case basis. For dogs, we may recommend an oral anti-inflammatory, or other stronger medications for several days after surgery to lessen the risk of discomfort and swelling.  We use medications that are less likely to cause stomach upset.  Recent advances in pain medications have allowed for better pain control in cats than ever before.  

Providing pain relief is a humane and caring thing to do for your pet.

What other decisions do I need to make?

While your pet is under anesthesia, it may be the ideal time to perform other minor procedures such as obtaining a fecal sample, ear cleaning, or implanting an identification microchip.  You will be asked other questions when dropping off the pet as well regarding presurgical bloodwork, laser surgery, and post-operative therapeutic laser treatment. Please call ahead to ask about these services and to get a cost estimate.

When you bring your pet in for surgery, we will need about 10 minutes of time to fill out presurgical paper work.  When you pick up your pet please plan on spending about 10-20 minutes to go over your pet's home care needs.

Sign up using the form below or call us at 815-288-3394.

Office Hours

Our Regular Schedule

Monday:

7:30 am

5:30 pm

Tuesday:

7:30 am

5:30 pm

Wednesday:

7:30 am

5:30 pm

Thursday:

7:30 am

5:30 pm

Friday:

7:30 am

5:30 pm

Saturday:

7:30 am

12:30 pm

Sunday:

Closed

Closed

Location

Find us on the map

Testimonial

Read What Our Clients Say

  • "We have had such great treatment of our dog, Maggie at River Ridge, even when we've called during off hours. From the doctors, office staff, groomers, boarding and daycare staff, everyone has been friendly and professional. Our dog loves to go there and we feel confident that she is getting the best care from everyone."
    Lorna E. Dixon, IL

Featured Articles

Read about interesting topics

  • Skunks

    Home and Veterinary Care for Pet Skunks If you're an adventurous pet owner, you may love exotic animals such as skunks. You'll be happy to learn that skunks can indeed make excellent domestic pets, but only if they receive the proper care to enjoy a happy, healthy life. Your veterinary team can help ...

    Read More
  • Sugar Gliders

    Thinking of getting a sugar glider? These tiny marsupials are energetic and friendly, making them popular choices as pets. Though they weigh less than a half-pound, they're more closely related to kangaroos than they are flying squirrels. If you think a sugar glider would make an ideal pet for your family, ...

    Read More
  • Flying Squirrels

    Much like sugar gliders, flying squirrels make affectionate pets when purchased young and raised by their owner. Unlike sugar gliders, however, flying squirrels are rodents that need veterinary care specific to the species. Your veterinary team can help with the care and treatment of flying squirrels. ...

    Read More
  • Rats

    Did you know rats make surprisingly affectionate pets? If you're thinking of bringing home a pet rat, here's what you need to know. Health Rats that are bred especially as pets are safe to keep and should be free of disease. But common conditions may affect your rats from time to time. Your veterinarian ...

    Read More
  • Chinchillas

    Chinchillas are playful, loveable, and amusing pets. If you want yours to remain in your family for long, you should ensure that it has a good diet. Chinchillas require a lot of attention due to their playful nature; therefore, it is best to have supervised playtime with yours if you want to create a ...

    Read More
  • Fennec Foxes

    Fennec Fox Care Guide With oversized ears and mischievous faces, fennec foxes are cute as can be. But these exotic pets require a lot of care to stay healthy and happy. Health At just three pounds, fennec foxes are the smallest member of the fox family. Native to the Sahara desert, fennec foxes are ...

    Read More
  • Guinea Pigs

    Curious and inquisitive by nature, guinea pigs make great pets. These little bundles of fur are quite social and enjoy spending time with the people who handle, feed, and groom them. As a pet, guinea pigs are relatively low maintenance, rarely aggressive, and fun to own. How to Care Guinea pigs are playful, ...

    Read More
  • Prairie Dogs

    Prairie dogs are cute, affable creatures. But before taking one on as a pet, check your local laws. In some states, such as Colorado, it's illegal to keep prairie dogs as pets. Mostly, this is because they may spread monkeypox. If you live in a state that welcomes pet prairie dogs, be sure to buy from ...

    Read More
  • Gerbils

    Gerbils are great little pets for pet owners who don't have room for a dog or cat. They're friendly and fun to watch, but they do take a moderate level of care and investment. If you're thinking of getting a gerbil, here's what you'll need to know to keep him happy and healthy, including giving him a ...

    Read More
  • Hedgehogs

    Shy animals that roll into a ball when scared, hedgehogs are covered with spiky quills. They're small, clean, and fun to watch so they're quite popular as pets. Even so, these little guys need lots of activity to stay healthy. Health Hedgehogs can have health problems, including dental diseases, skin ...

    Read More

Newsletter Signup

Sign up for more articles