Standards of surgical care

Our expert team will take every measure to keep your pet safe before, during and after surgery. paw


Whether your pet is in for a routine spay, neuter, dental cleaning, mass removal or a more complicated surgical procedure, every general anesthetic surgery is accompanied with some risk.

To reduce the risk of complications, we require the following for every surgical procedure at our hospital:

♥ Pre-anesthetic examination: A complete physical examination by the veterinarian, where your pet
’s overall health will be evaluated to identify any potential problems associated with the surgery and general anesthesia.

♥ Pre-surgical blood work and EKG: A chemistry profile and Complete Blood Count (CBC) will give an indication that your
pet’s kidneys, liver and other internal organs are functioning properly to metabolize anesthesia. Blood work can also reveal serious underlying medical conditions that would postpone or eliminate surgery altogether. An EKG is required on older pets or pets with a known heart conditions.

♥ IV catheterization and fluids: Fluids are essential in keeping your pet hydrated during the surgical procedure. Without proper fluid administration, your pet’s internal organs cannot clear the anesthetic agents from his/her body after the surgery. Fluids are also an important component in maintaining proper blood pressure levels during and after surgery.

♥ Anesthetic monitoring: Our modern surgical equipment monitors respiration, blood pressure, heart rate, oxygen levels, temperature and EKG. An experienced veterinary assistant tracks your pet’s parameters and adjusts the anesthesia as needed. Our expert team will be with your pet until he/she fully recovers from surgery.

♥ Peri-operative pain management: Our veterinarians administer pain management medications both before and after surgery to ensure your pet is as comfortable as possible.

♥ Post-operative pain management: In addition to sending pain management medications home with your pet, our veterinarians treat all patients post-surgically with our therapy laser machine. This reduces inflammation and increases healing time. Click here to read more about our therapy laser machine.

♥ Hospitalization: Routine spays, neuters, dental cleanings and mass removals typically go home the same day. Pets with more invasive surgical procedures spend at least one night in the hospital so that we can monitor for pain, bleeding and to be sure that your pet is fully recovered before returning home.

No veterinary hospital can guarantee that a surgical procedure will be free of complications, however, please consider what our veterinarians require before choosing a lower cost surgical option. At the Animal Hospital of Shawnee Hills, we are committed to providing the safest, most comfortable surgical experience possible for your pet!