Neutering or spaying is crucial if you do not intend to breed your dog. It helps prevent accidental breeding, which leads to shelter overcrowding, and helps calm a hyper dog. Because neutering/spay is a complex procedure that involves surgery, the paw parent must take extra care of the dog, like using a cone and locking them in a crate to minimize movements.
It takes a dog 10-14 days for the incision to heal completely. You should be vigilant and notify your vet if you see a sign of infection on the incision. But it is hard to notify your vet if you do not know what an infected incision looks like. So, what are the signs of infection after neutering/ spaying a dog?
Signs Of Infection After Neutering Dog
Though neuter infections are rare, they can still occur. These signs are; redness, swelling, presence of blood or pus, fishlike smell, the incision not healing by the 14th day, lack of appetite, re-opening of the incision site, lethargy, shaking, diarrhea, and vomiting after the first 24 hours after neuter. Therefore, you should contact your vet immediately if you notice any of the stated signs for guidance on what to do.
What to Expect the First Night After a Spay or Neuter
It is most likely that your vet will send the dog home to be observed by the owner, not unless the clinic offers 24-hour care.
Here is what you should do on the first night after spaying/neutering;
- Ensure you have a record of either audio or written guidelines from your vet on how to handle your dog. Also, please look at the incision to know what it looks like when it is normal so you can easily know when it is infected.
- Ensure your dog is comfortable and constantly keep watch on your dog overnight.
- Even though your dog can vomit as n effect of the anesthesia, you should ask your vet to what extent to know when it is an emergency. Like when he vomits blood.
- You should not expect your dog to eat normally. Mostly, he can lack appetite.
- You can check for signs like drooling, shaking, and hiding, indicating that he is in extreme pain.
- The incision can ooze a small amount of blood which is rare. You should contact your vet if the incision is bleeding, as it can be a dangerous sign.
- Do not hesitate to call your vet if you are unsure of anything.
Possible Complications That Can Result From Neutering Dogs
Anesthetic problems: How a dog reacts to anesthesia differs from one dog to the other. A dog can show no adverse reaction, while others will need time to return to normal. If your dog is having appears sick after the surgery, contact your vet.
Bruises and swelling in the scrotal area: It is hard to remove testicles from an old dog than a puppy. Old dogs give the vet a hard time during the surgery, leaving bruised and swellings. If your dog has a minor swelling or bruising, you should manage it with a cold pack. However, you should call your vet in case of major swelling and bruises.
Internal Breeding: Failure to tie up the blood vessels properly after surgery bleeding can occur. This can lead to the dog having pale gum, which immediately calls for vets’ attention.
Self-caused injuries: you must ensure that your dog doesn’t cause harm to the incision. Dogs tend to soothe themselves by licking, which can make the incision to re-open. You should call your vet immediately if your dog licks or bites the wound.
Infection: A freshly cut incision can be the best place for bacteria to grow. Additionally, if the incision comes into contact with dirt or moisture, it can fuel the bacteria. If you note that the incision looks abnormal, you should call your vet.
Ovarian remnants: this is a rare condition where some female dogs’ ovarian tissues are left after spaying. This can lead to infections, hormonal problems, and contracting pyometra on a minimal occasion.
Death: This is the last thing a dog parent wants to hear. Anaesthetizing a dog can lead to many side effects, including death in rare cases. Fortunately, it has been proved by multiple studies that the mortality rate of dogs due to neuter or spaying is at 0.03%
How to Treat an Infected Dog Neuter at Home
You should only treat a neuter incision at home if it is mild. A serious infection should be taken to the vet.
Below are some ways in which you can treat your infected dog after neutering/spay at home;
- Using a ward dump cloth (not soaked), woe the incision gently to remove any discharge or crust. You can leave the clothing for a few minutes if he is okay with the whole process. Doing this will help in minimizing infections.
- If your dog is managing to lick or bite the incision wound even with the cone on, you should consider other alternatives, like the recovery suit.
- Locking your dog in a crate will help minimize excessive movements that delay the healing process. However, the crate should be big enough to allow him to turn and sleep comfortably. Keep the crate where there is minimal movement of people and objects, as they might startle him.
- Apply the medicine as instructed by the vet and ensure that your dog does not lick it off.
How can I tell if my dog’s neuter is healing poorly?
An ordinary neuter incision will first be pink and somewhat raised in the first few days. It will gradually put itself back together after 14 days or less. An incision not healing properly may turn red, swell, or ooze discharge. It might not heal adequately in those two weeks or separate from the stitches.
Ensure that before leaving the clinic, you know what a non-infected incision looks like so that you can know the signs of infection after your dog is neutered. Also, take good care of your dog during this period so that he cannot lick or bite the incision leading to re-opening. It can cost you a lot of money and is not healthy for your dog.