After Care for a Neuter

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Neuter your male cats and dogs if you're not going to breed them.
Neuter your male cats and dogs if you're not going to breed them. (Image: Puppies of the spitz-dog and cat in studio image by Ulf from Fotolia.com)

Neutering is the process of removing the testicles to impair your male dog's reproductive capacity and keep him healthy. Neutering your dog or cat is a surgical procedure, and you should take extra good care of him as he's healing.

Recovery

Right after the surgery, your dog or cat may seem groggy or sleepy. This is normal and will wear off after awhile. Owners should watch their pets until the anesthesia has fully left the dog's system to ensure that he doesn't get into trouble, like falling from a high place or running into furniture.

Stitches

Cats and small dogs will most likely have dissolvable stitches while larger dogs will have regular sutures that a vet must remove.

The Incision

Veterinarians disagree as to if it's healthy for an animal to lick its wounds. However, the general consensus is that licking is okay but picking and biting at the incision is not. You don't want your pet opening up the wound or biting through the sutures. You don't need to clean the wound, just try to make sure the area stays clean and free of dirt, grass and litter. Owners should note anything that doesn't look quite right, like discharge or undue swelling, and call the vet if necessary.

Medications

Your pet will be in some pain but this is minor. Some veterinarians will give pain medication but not all of them believe it's necessary. Any pain will subside in a few days. Your vet may give you antibiotics for the pet to prevent infection.

Activity

For the first few days, owners should try to keep their pets from jumping too much, running around the house or yard and getting rough with each other. This could cause the incision to open. Your pet may seem lethargic for a couple days, making this task easier on you.

Diet

Cats and dogs who have just been neutered still have anesthesia in their bodies, which could make them nauseous. Pain medications can also have this effect. Therefore, give only a portion of the animal's normal diet for the first day, and limit water intake. Your pet may not have a bowel movement for the first day due to the decreased food intake.

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