A question we get asked fairly often is, “How long after spaying or neutering can I bathe my dog?”
The answer to this depends on many factors such as the type of surgery (spay or neuter), how old your dog was when spayed/neutered, and the location of surgery (just incision site or entire region spayed, i.e. ovaries or testicles).
For example, if you had your dog’s entire reproductive tract (ovaries and testes) removed it would be best to wait about 1 month before bathing them because this will limit the amount of time bacteria can enter the surgical site which is important for recovering from surgery.
If your dog had spayed or neutered only at the incision site then you could bathe them as soon as they are comfortable with being in water but I would recommend waiting 24 hours before bathing just to be safe.
Can I take my dog’s stitches out myself?
Contact your veterinarian immediately if you find that your dog is chewing at their stitches.
Dogs with stitches usually have to wear a collar with an elastic bandage wrap or ” Elizabethan collar” for about 4 weeks.
The most common reasons why dogs chew their stitches are:
- discomfort caused by the irritation of the wound site by E-collar,
- the constant itching sensation that happens when they start to heal,
- muscle ache due to lack of movement and pain associated with arthritis which is often seen in geriatric pets (older than 7 years old).
- Also, some dogs just can’t resist soft spots on our bodies like wounds! A wound under observation should be cleaned daily using warm water and mild unscented soap.
If you notice that your dog is chewing his stitches, just try to avoid it by using a bitter spray for dogs on the affected area.
This spray will make the wound site taste bad and your pet will not be attracted by it anymore. If this does not help or if there are multiple chewed areas with short intervals, contact your veterinarian immediately.
How often should I have my pet spayed or neutered?
A common question is how often to spay or neuter pets. While there are different schools of thought about this, here’s what the experts say.
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) believes that animals can be spayed or neutered as young as eight weeks old, however, it states that any age at which the animal can safely undergo surgery and recover is acceptable.
Other organizations recommend waiting until your pet is six months old before spaying or neutering.
However, if you adopt an animal that has already been altered, then the organization you adopted from will likely recommend altering your pet at whatever age they were altered.
Since the procedure may increase the likelihood of certain cancers later in life, veterinarians want to wait until the animal has reached puberty before performing the surgery. Female animals tend to go into heat every two to three weeks.
Dogs mature more quickly than cats, typically going into heat around six months of age.
Cats usually begin puberty between five and 12 months of age, but generally are not considered sexually mature until they are about one year old.
Male pets can be neutered once they have developed enough so that the testicles descend, which usually occurs at four to six months of age .
If you adopted an altered pet, he or she was probably already fixed before being given up by their previous family.
Some veterinarians believe that there’s no reason why you cannot alter your pet even earlier than eight weeks if you choose. In fact, there are some veterinarians who perform the surgery as early as 12-14 weeks.
If you do decide to have your pet altered at a young age, talk to your veterinarian about any special instructions.
If you feel strongly that your pet should not be spayed or neutered before a certain age , talk with your veterinarian about why they think this.
Veterinarians may have different opinions on when is best to spay or neuter pets based on their experience and training.
In addition, some veterinarians will alter older pets under special circumstances such as for medical conditions (this will increase the risk of complications) or for those who cannot afford the alteration until later in life .
In general, it is believed that altering your pet at a young age will not only prevent unwanted litters but may also prevent certain medical conditions in the future.
For example, females are less likely to develop urinary incontinence if they are spayed before their first heat cycle . This condition can be very difficult to manage later in life even with medication.
When Should I Change My Pet’s Food?
Pet owners often ask how long they should feed a particular brand of food before switching it out for something new.
The answer depends on what type of food you’re feeding your pet and how quickly their body is able to absorb all of the nutrients it needs.
For dry foods, experts recommend buying a large bag that will last throughout most or all of your pet’s life.
That way, you gradually introduce new food as your pet gets older so the digestive system has time to adjust.
You can also give our office a call during business hours and we’ll be glad to answer any questions you might have about aftercare for your pet!