What to expect if your pet needs surgery

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Your pet is a treasured family member and we understand how much they mean to you. We take enormous pride in our surgical work and our knowledgeable team are often called upon to give advice and expertise to others.

Here at Oakhill we promise that your pet will receive the highest level of veterinary care and that as their owner, you will be kept informed at all stages.

Before you arrive

Unless surgery is being performed in emergency circumstances you will be given a date and time that your pet will need to arrive at our Oakhill Windermere surgery and what pre-surgery action you and your pet may need to take, such as fasting or taking out to the toilet.

You will have been informed of the reasons that surgery has been selected as the most appropriate course of action for your pet, what the procedure entails, what risks are involved and what to expect during recovery. We can also provide you with a written estimate of the costs involved. We do this because we think it’s important you feel comfortable with what’s happening.

Remember you can always ask our friendly team any questions along the way.

When you arrive

You and your pet will be made to feel welcome, calm and relaxed by our experienced team before your pet is admitted. There, you will have a moment to spend some time with your pet as things are explained to you by one of the nursing or veterinary team who will then take your animal through to theatre to prepare them for surgery.

You will be informed roughly how long we expect the procedure to take and when to be ready to return to take your pet home. Depending on the surgery and level of post-operative monitoring required this is sometimes not the same day.

The procedure
The procedure

Prior to any general anaesthetic patients have a full clinical examination and are given pre-medications which often include; sedatives, pain relief and sometimes antibiotics and anti-sickness medications.

After thorough preparation your pet will be expertly operated on in our state-of-art theatre where all the clinical and medical equipment needed is readily available. All surgery is carried out by our highly experienced surgical team and supported by qualified veterinary nurses.

Our hard-working surgical team also conduct our out-of-hours work, so the same familiar face with an understanding of your animal’s case is always on hand should they need to be.

pet needs surgery3

Immediately after surgery

Following your pet’s successful surgery, we transfer them to our state-of-the-art, warm and friendly recovery kennelling space and monitor them closely. We have separate facilities for dogs, cats and little pets such as rabbits and guinea pigs.

We also have CCTV to monitor our inpatients and 24-hour care on hand with all the monitoring equipment and medications you would naturally expect in a modern veterinary facility. As your pet comes round they are tended to by our friendly nursing team, who will look after them as if they were one of their own until they are ready to be collected.

Staying overnight

Overnight stays are often recommended following a procedure so our expert team can keep an eye on your pet as they recover from their operation. The complexity of the surgery undertaken, and the level of post-operative care required will determine how long your surgeon recommends your pet stays with us for.

Your pet will be closely monitored and well looked after by our Oakhill team. A vet and a nurse are on duty 24 hours a day including through weekends and bank holidays.

Our temperature-controlled kennels even have infrared cameras for observation through the night and are fully equipped with latest technologies including piped oxygen to keep your pet’s recovery on the right track.

It’s nice for your pet to have some home comforts for this part of their recovery so you may wish to bring in their favourite blanket to keep them cosy. If you have any questions about your pet’s stay with us, we will always be happy to discuss these with you.

Back at home

When your pet returns home you will be advised on how to give them the best home care and rehabilitation so they can lead an active and happy life as soon as possible.

Advice may include things like; eating or avoiding certain foods, exercise patterns, how much rest they will need, keeping them comfortable, looking after their dressings between changes, and anything else you might want to know.

Remember there is a 24-hour surgical and nursing team on hand in the unlikely event that any issues arise once you are at home.

Recovering from surgery and rehabilitation

For some animals an operation is the final piece of the jigsaw, after a little TLC at home recovery is a quick process at the end of which your pet will return to a fully active life.

For others, surgery may mark the beginning of a new journey to that goal and recovery may require more input and rehabilitation. We are proud that at Oakhill we can help recovering animals who need more complex rehabilitation with treatments that compliment and strengthen your animal’s resolve to heal.

Our Animal Rehabilitation Centre (ARC) is one of only a handful of veterinary led centres of its kind in the UK. Here you can access cutting edge treatments for your pet; including our water treadmill, laser therapy and even canine massage and physiotherapy to help them get back to a fully active and happy life.