Dog And Cat Pre Operative Castration Advice

Once you have made an appointment for your pet to be castrated, please offer a small meal at 10pm the night before the anaesthetic and then withhold any further food. Access to water should be allowed until they are ready to come into the surgery. 

Once admitted they will be examined by your vet and given a health check.  If your pet is fit and healthy a premedication injection will be given.  This helps calm the body and prepare him for the general anaesthetic.  The premedication can take 20 – 45 minutes to take effect and they will be slightly sleepy and relaxed.

Once your pet is ready, he will then be taken through to the Prep room.  A small area of hair is clipped from his leg, an intravenous catheter is placed and a general anaesthetic is injected into the vein.

An endotracheal tube is then placed into his trachea to maintain a clear airway for us to administer an oxygen/gaseous anaesthetic mix to keep him under anaesthetic.

Once asleep under anaesthetic he will be prepared for theatre.  His veterinary nurse monitors the anaesthetic while shaving an area of hair from his testicles.  Once the hair has been shaved the area is then cleaned using an antiseptic soap.  When all the dirt and hair has been removed a surgical spirit/antiseptic preparation is then applied to the operation site. This procedure is carried out to reduce any bacteria on the skin and provide a sterile operation site. All the hair will grow back in time. They are then transferred to theatre.

The nurse will carefully monitor the anaesthetic during the surgery.  Your vet will perform the castration by firstly making an incision in front of the scrotum. Each testicle is then clamped, tied off with suture material and then removed. The skin is then sutured with dissolvable stitches. This is a permanent and irreversible procedure.  Once your vet has completed the surgery the gaseous anaesthetic is switched off and your pet will be maintained on pure oxygen for a short period of time.

Once the veterinary nurse is happy, we will then disconnect the anaesthetic circuit and transport your pet to the Hospital Ward where the endotracheal tube is removed when ready.  He is placed into a warm kennel and his recovery carefully monitored by the Hospital nurse (a qualified veterinary nurse).  Once he is sitting up and alert, his intravenous catheter is removed and the Hospital nurse will contact you to update you on their progress and arrange a collection time. On discharge a veterinary nurse will explain all necessary post- operative care.

We will only discharge a patient when we feel they are fully awake and able to walk. Some pets take longer to fully recover than others and are treated on a case by case situation, so don’t panic if a late time is requested for collection.

The benefits of having your pet castrated:

  • May improve unwanted behaviour (if castrated early)
  • Decreases risk of prostatic disease
  • Testicular tumours are prevented
  • Reduced incidence of perianal tumours
  • Reduced incidence of perianal hernia
  • Stops dogs from running away after bitches in season

Dog And Cat Neutering Post Operative Care

These instructions have been prepared to help you with your pet’s recovery.

They will have had a general anaesthetic and hair may have been clipped from one or more of their legs. If a pre- anaesthetic blood test was performed, hair may have also been clipped in their neck region. The operation site will also have been clipped to enable us to prepare the site with maximum sterility.

Modern anaesthetics normally wear off within a few hours of a procedure, however you may notice that their eyes appear red or that they shun the light. This effect can last for up to 48 hours and is due to the pre-medication injections. They may also seem a little unsteady or drowsy and have a slight cough. This is because a tube is passed into their throat to maintain their anaesthetic and airway.

We recommend keeping them warm and quiet overnight and allow them to toilet in the garden on a lead. Following an anaesthetic they will require a light meal in the evening with water offered as normal.

During the procedure your pet will have received a pain killer injection and/or an antibiotic injection where required.  Further medication may have been prescribed to give at home and it is extremely important that you follow the instructions on the medication label. If you believe they are uncomfortable or have any questions regarding the medication, please contact us to discuss the situation.

It is extremely important that your pet does not lick or interfere with the surgical wound. This can cause an infection or their wound to break down and a Buster Collar may be required to prevent this. A period of lead exercise or confinement indoors will be required for up to 10 days following the procedure.

Following a neutering procedure, weight gain can be a common side effect. Your veterinary nurse will be able to advise on your pet’s diet and the best way to prevent this.

Please feel free to ask if you have any questions at your post operative appointment.

If you are at all concerned about your pet please contact us as soon as possible.

Neutering Your Male Cat – Castration

What is castration?

The operation involves surgical removal of both testicles via two small incisions in your cat’s scrotal sacs. It is a straightforward operation performed under general anaesthesia. Your cat will be admitted as a ‘day patient’ and following a pre-operative check by your veterinary surgeon, he will be given a pre-medication and analgesic (pain killing) injection prior to his general anaesthetic. After surgery and following his recovery from the anaesthetic he will be ready to go home later the same day. You will be given full discharge instructions on how best to care for your cat after surgery. We usually don’t need to recheck your cat after castration unless you have any concerns. There aren’t any sutures to worry about and the wounds heal over very quickly as long as there is no interference with the area!

What are the advantages of castration?

Castration has a number of advantages especially if performed between 4-6 months of age.

Unwanted kittens– Most obviously castration prevents unwanted litters. There are thousands of unwanted kittens and cats that need homes due to irresponsible owners who do not neuter their cats.   

Behavioural problems– Unneutered male cats or ‘tom cats’ can also develop a number of unwanted characteristics. For example they may become territorial and start spraying urine to mark areas, often in the house.  By puberty their urine has often developed a very strong smell and is extremely difficult to remove.  If they are allowed to venture outside they will start to stray further from home and come into contact with other cats. This is likely to lead to cat fights which result in wounds which can become infected and abscessed. Unneutered males also tend to be prone to being involved in road traffic accidents especially at night as they are out and about marking their territory and looking for females.

Prevent spread of diseases– Mating and fighting can also spread diseases like FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus) and FeLV (Feline Leukaemia Virus) which can be fatal.                                                                                                      

Medical-Normally cats have two testicles present in their scrotal sac by the time they are neutered but it is not uncommon to have retained testicles (cryptorchidism). This is a condition where by one or both of the testicles have failed to move into the scrotum and are still in your cat’s groin or abdomen. When the testicles are retained they are at a higher temperature than in the scrotum. This leads to infertility and an increased likelihood of the testicle becoming cancerous. Removal of the testicle(s) is therefore still recommended but the operation may be a bit more complicated as the abdomen may need to be entered.

Are there any disadvantages?

The operation carries a small risk associated with general anaesthesia. Your cat will be assessed prior to surgery to ensure he is fit and well for the procedure, and full instructions will be given when he goes home to minimise the chances of a problem occurring with the wound.

It is a common fallacy that a neutered cat will become fat and lazy. They may have a decreased activity level following neutering, which in turn causes weight gain IF your cat continues to be fed the same amount of food as before they were neutered. Neutered pets can require up to a 30% reduction in their feeding requirements. This is due to no longer utilising energy in to reproduction.This extra energy may then be stored as excess body fat instead.

After your cat is neutered, we recommend moving him onto a neutered cat food. Royal Canin have developed a competitively priced, veterinary exclusive pet food which is high in protein and low in fat to help combat against any weight gain. Your veterinary nurse will be able to advise you on the best feeding regime for your cat.

Royal Canin also have an S/O Index with their food which is an abbreviation for struvite and calcium oxalate crystals. The S/O Index indicates that the food helps provide a urinary environment unfavourable to the development of struvite and calcium oxalate crystals.

These are crystals which can form in your cat’s urine creating urinary problems. The crystals can eventually cause a ‘plug’ or blockage in your male cat’s urethra. It only takes a few crystals to block as the urethra is very narrow and only has a small opening. This is a potentially fatal condition and will result in death if your cat is not treated due to the urinary toxins building up in the system. This will cause kidney failure in a matter of days or their bladder will eventually burst.

Click on the video below to find out more about why you should neuter your cat.

Useful website:
www.royalcanin.co.uk

Neutering Your Male Dog – Castration

What is castration?

The operation involves surgical removal of both testicles via an incision in front of your dog’s scrotum. It is a straightforward operation performed under general anaesthesia.  Your dog will be admitted as a ‘day patient’ and following a pre-operative check by your veterinary surgeon, he will be given a pre-medication and analgesic (pain killing) injection prior to his general anaesthetic. After surgery and following his recovery from the anaesthetic he will be ready to go home later the same day. You will be given full discharge instructions on how best to care for your dog after surgery and he will be checked by your veterinary nurse 3 days later to ensure the wound is healing. If there are any sutures present these will be removed 10 days later. Your dog will go home with some pain relief medication for a few days and a Buster collar if required to prevent any interfering with their wound.

What are the advantages of castration?

Medical – Male dogs are prone to several medical conditions.  Enlargement of the prostate, testicular tumours and certain types of anal tumours are relatively common in older entire dogs.  Removal of the testicles minimises the chances of there being problems in later life.

Retained testicles (cryptorchidism) – This is a condition where by one or both of the testicles have failed to move into the scrotum and are still in your dog’s groin or abdomen.  If the testicles have not descended by the time your dog is 8 months old they are probably unlikely to move any further. When the testicles are retained they are at a higher temperature than in the scrotum. This leads to infertility and an increased likelihood of the testicle becoming cancerous. Removal of the testicle(s) is therefore still recommended but the operation may be a bit more complicated as the abdomen may need to be entered.

Unwanted puppies – Thousands of unwanted dogs are destroyed every year due to ‘accidental matings’.  Being responsible for your dog’s actions will greatly reduce the stray dog problem in this country.

Behavioural problems – Once a dog has reached puberty at about six months they may start showing male characteristics such as mounting or aggression.  This sort of behaviour is generally considered antisocial and unacceptable.   Certain behavioural problems such as dominance, aggression, urine marking and roaming may be improved with castration.  However castration should not be looked at as ‘the answer’ to all bad behaviour and will not stop a dog being ‘bouncy’ for example.  Also while hormones are responsible for some behaviour initially, your dog may continue with these behavioural problems out of habit. If you are unsure of whether castration will help in your dog’s situation you should consult your veterinary surgeon to discuss the problem.

Are there any disadvantages?

The operation carries a small risk associated with general anaesthesia.  Your dog will be assessed prior to surgery to ensure he is fit and well for the procedure, and full instructions will be given when he goes home to minimise the chances of a problem occurring with the wound.

It is a common fallacy that a neutered dog will become fat and lazy. They may have a decreased activity level following neutering, which in turn causes weight gain IF your dog continues to be fed the same amount of food as before they were neutered. Neutered pets can require up to a 30% reduction in their feeding requirements. This is due to no longer utilising energy in to reproduction. This extra energy may then be stored as excess body fat instead.

After your dog is neutered, we recommend moving him onto a neutered dog food. Royal Canin have developed a competitively priced, veterinary exclusive pet food, Royal Canin VetCare Nutrition range. This food is high in protein and low in fat to help combat against any weight gain. Your veterinary nurse will be able to advise you on the best feeding regime for your dog.

When to castrate?

The best time for castration is 6 – 12 months of age (depending on breed) at the onset of puberty although adult dogs can be castrated at any age.

Are there any alternatives?

There are two non-surgical options which can be used for temporary effects:

One is an implant given by injection which blocks the production of hormones suspending the fertility of sexually mature male dogs for a minimum of 6 months. The other is an anti-male hormone injection. Two injections may be required and its effect is short lived (3 – 4 weeks).  There can be side effects and your dog would need to have a health check so it is important that you discuss these options further with your veterinary surgeon if you require more information.

Useful links:
www.royalcanin.co.uk