When Is Anesthesia Necessary?

Anesthesia is considered “controlled consciousness” in order for your pet to remain still and not feel pain during certain procedures. Examples include dentistry, surgery such as spaying or neutering, and some imaging tests used to diagnose illness.

Most healthy pets – including senior pets – tolerate anesthesia well and in many cases, the risk to your pet is more closely associated with the procedure v. the anesthesia.

It is understandable to have anxiety if your pet needs anesthesia, so we’ve provided a more thorough explanation of the process and precautions we take.

Anesthesia Process

  • Thorough physical exam
  • Review pet’s medical history
  • Perform blood test to check for indications of developing a medical problem or risk to anesthesia
  • A pre-anesthetic sedative may be given to reduce your pet’s stress and ease the process. An intravenous catheter is placed to allow administration of fluids and medications
  • The anesthetic may be gas inhalation, infusion or a combination of the two
Pre Anesthesia

  • Your pet will recieve monitoring and care similar to what a human receives
  • This may include:
    • intravenous fluids
    • medications to support blood pressure and circulation
    • an endotracheal tube to deliver the gas and provide oxygen to the lungs
    • pulse oximetry to measure oxygen in your pet’s blood
    • blood pressure monitoring, temperature monitoring
    • warming blankets
  • An ECG/EKG may also be performed to monitor your pet’s heart.
During Anesthesia

  • Once the procedure is finished and it is time for your pet to wake up, he or she will be placed in a quiet, semi-dark cage or kennel
  • Pads and blankets are provided to keep your pet warm, but it’s not uncommon for a pet to shiver during recovery
  • Some pets may whine, bark or meow during recovery
  • The tube will be removed so your pet can swallow normally
  • Fluids or medications may be continued through recovery, depending upon the pet’s condition
  • Pets may be sent home the same day or remain in-clinic under our care for monitoring
Post Anesthesia