What is your pre-surgical policy?

No food after 9:00pm the night before surgery, water is OK until morning, take it away when you get up. Pre-surgical blood tests are mandatory in patients over 7. In younger patients they may be waived by written consent, though we don’t recommend this as it is safest to have blood values on all patients. Surgery drop off is generally between 7:30 – 8:00 am.

Will my pet have to stay overnight when having a surgical procedure?

Almost all patients are able to return home in the afternoon after surgery, depending on the procedure. Patients requiring monitoring and care after hours are sometimes transferred to the Animal ER of San Diego, though this is rarely necessary. Doctors will discuss all options with you prior to any transfer.

We do not have someone continuously on the premises after hours. We do have an alarm system that is monitored 24/7 for fire, smoke and illegal entry.

How long are surgeries?

Surgery times can vary depending on the procedure being done, though we usually estimate for about an hour. Recovery times can vary from patient to patient with most up and awake not long after surgery. We generally perform our surgeries in the morning and then pets go home later in the afternoon.

Why would I need a histopathology?

If something doesn’t look normal or is suspicious to the doctor they may ask to run a histopath. This way we can send a sample to a laboratory to make sure something isn’t cancerous. This can often be recommended when removing a growth to make sure that it’s nothing to worry about.

Why do I need an e-collar? Can’t I just watch my dog?

You can’t watch your dog 24/7. Even if they act perfectly fine around you they are extremely likely to lick or bite at their sutures the moment you are away or asleep. Licking at their surgery site can lead to infection and if they pull out a stitch it can lead to a costly anesthetic to re-suture.  For their safety and your wallet please leave their cone on until all sutures have been removed.

Is anesthesia safe for my pet?

We use very high quality anesthetics in our clinic as well as monitoring devices the entire time your pet is undergoing a procedure, as well as a dedicated monitoring technician to watch your pet the entire time. Our doctors will preform a pre-surgical evaluation of your pet to evaluate the risk level your pet would pose to undergoing anesthesia. The vast majority of animals we see are perfectly fine for procedures, even most of our geriatric patients! We routinely see pets in their teens coming in for dental cleanings and recovering very well afterward. Even though anesthesia is never 100% safe, even for people, we make every effort to make it the best experience for you and your pet.

Do you perform ear cropping/tail docking or cat declawing?

No, we do not generally provide ear cropping or tail docking services. Sometimes tail docking is done on very young puppies, but must be first discussed with the veterinarians. Cat declawing is only done under certain circumstances when it is deemed absolutely necessary, otherwise we would highly recommend a behavior consultation.

What is involved in your anesthesia?

This can often be a scary thought for many pet owners. While it’s true that anesthesia is never 100% safe, we here at KMVC do our best to make it as safe as possible. Our priority is your pet’s health and well being.

The first step is having your pet fasted. We ask you to do this to limit the chance of your pet having any aspiration complications if they vomit while they are having their procedure done.

Next your pet is given an injection of medications to relax and sedate them. This helps them go under anesthesia easier and reduces the amount of anesthetics used overall.

A catheter is placed in their leg to provide easy access to their vein for injectable medications as well as the fluids given during their procedure. Fluids are important for blood pressure and overall organ function.

Your pet is then induced and intubated as monitoring equipment is attached. A dedicated technician is with your pet at all times. We monitor the following:

Heart Rate
Breathing Rate
Oxygen Level
CO2 levels
Blood Pressure

Once your pet is done with surgery they are recovered and monitored until they are awake enough to go home.


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