Pet Surgery

Learn more about our pet surgery services below.

Animal Medical Clinic of Spring Hill exam room

Pet Surgery in Spring Hill

Pet Surgery

At Animal Medical Clinic of Spring Hill, we understand the decision to allow your pet to undergo surgery is never an easy one. Our team is highly skilled and experienced in performing a wide variety of pet surgeries using modern techniques, cutting-edge equipment and always adhering to the strictest standards of safety and care.

Pre-Operative Blood Work
Blood work is usually a combination of a complete blood count (CBC) and a blood chemical analysis. Blood work is a basic evaluation tool. Pets, particularly those in their senior years, should have a CBC at every annual examination. Blood work allows a veterinarian to monitor the progression of a pet’s disease.

Routine blood tests are run before anesthesia and surgery to make sure that your pet does not have a disease or illness that would make anesthesia or surgery a significant risk. This lab work is very similar to the “pre-op labs” that your doctor would recommend before you have any procedure performed on yourself.

Spay surgery involves the surgical removal of the ovaries and uterus in the female so that they cannot have puppies or kittens. This is major abdominal surgery for your pet. Spaying stops messy heats, pesky males hanging around, and unwanted or surprise litters. It also prevents certain medical conditions such as uterine infections (pyometra) or tumors and reduces the chances and severity of mammary tumors – all of which can be deadly!. The surgery should be done prior to the first heat in order to realize these benefits. This generally occurs around 6 months of age but it does depend upon the breed. The high estrogen spike with a heat cycle or pregnancy is what sets up the female for health problems down the road. The surgery does not cause a personality change and the slight tendency toward weight gain can easily be controlled by diet.

Female dogs will generally go through a heat cycle or estrus every 6 months. The heat cycle may last several days or up to three or four weeks. She may become short-tempered or anxious during this time.

On the other hand, female cats come into heat cycles every three to four weeks during certain times of the year. They may show signs of nervousness, and exhibit unusual behaviors such as rolling on the floor, furtively hiding, or wanting constant attention. They can also become quite vocal.

When your pet is spayed at Animal Medical Clinic of Spring Hill, they will undergo anesthesia with full anesthetic monitoring during the procedure. The pets will be placed in a heated recovery area and monitored closely because they may still be groggy after surgery. A pick-up time will be scheduled with the owner. Patients will go home on pain medications and instructions on strict exercise restrictions. If you have any questions or concerns regarding surgery or would like to schedule surgery, please give us a call for more information.

Most male dogs and cats are ready and willing to reproduce by the time they are 6 to 12 months old. They are able to breed consistently throughout the year or whenever they are exposed to a receptive female. Both male dogs and cats are prone to wander in search of romance and may find themselves exposed to fighting with other animals or even greater dangers such as cars.

In addition, male cats are well-known to mark their territories by spraying odorous urine on furniture, walls, shrubs, etc. Male dogs will also mark their territories. Surgical neutering of male dogs and cats eliminates reproductive behavior and reduces urine odor and the desire to spray. Your dog or cat will continue to have his own unique personality. He will be less likely to roam and will enjoy staying around home more. The surgery removes the testicles. Deciding when is the best time to neuter or castrate your pet is a decision you should discuss with your veterinarian. All neuters are performed under general anesthesia and will proper anesthetic monitoring.  The pets will be placed in a heated recovery area and monitored closely because they may still be groggy after surgery. A pick-up time will be scheduled with the owner. Patients will go home on pain medications and instructions on strict exercise restrictions. Cats do not have sutures and dogs will have absorbable sutures, so no follow-up appointment is required unless you have questions or concerns regarding the surgical site.

Laceration Repair

One of the most common surgeries performed in veterinary medicine is a laceration repair. A laceration is a wound produced by the tearing of body tissue. Bites, cuts, and punctures often cause severe damage requiring surgical treatment. Surgical repair is indicated whenever the laceration occurred recently and is large enough to warrant sutures. Wounds have many causes, sizes, and locations. They are usually treated surgically by cleaning and removing the damaged tissue, then closing the wound with sutures. In some cases, drains may be placed in wounds if there is a concern for fluid build-up under the skin. If your pet has a laceration, please give us a call immediately. For this situation, we do not require a referral or previous diagnosis from your primary vet. The longer the time between injury and repair, the more likely the tissues will become infected and healing will be delayed.

We will provide you with detailed instructions for post-operative care. The post-operative care and monitoring component of recovering from a laceration surgery is just as important as the surgery. As the owner, you will need to be attentive to making sure your pet wears a cone around its collar to prevent aggravating and licking the wound.

Bladder Stones are rock-like formations of minerals that develop in the urinary bladder. In pets, they are commonly caused by chronic low-grade urinary tract infections and/or the way your pet metabolizes the mineral contents of food and water. The most common signs that a pet has bladder stones would be blood in urine and straining to urinate. Blood in the urine occurs because the stones rub against the bladder wall, irritating and damaging the tissue and causing bleeding. Straining to urinate may result from inflammation and swelling of the bladder wall and urethra (the tube that transports the urine from the bladder to the exterior of the body), muscle spasms, or physical obstruction of urine flow. Bladder stones are commonly most detected by x-rays, or if there are many, your primary vet may find them by palpating the bladder with their hands. Surgical removal of bladder stones is often the quickest way of taking care of your pet. Once the bladder stones have been accessed and removed, we will send the stones out to our lab to be analyzed for their composition. Your pet will need to be on a special diet based on the results of the stones from the lab.

We will provide you with detailed instructions for post-operative care. ​The post-operative care and monitoring component of recovering from Bladder Stone Surgery are just as important as the surgery. As the owner, you will need to be attentive to keeping your pet on the recommended diet and keep the incision site clean and dry, as well as ensure that your pet wears a cone around its collar to prevent aggravating the area. ​These stones will recur if you do not take preventative measures after surgery. It is highly recommended to make a follow-up appointment with your primary veterinarian to create and implement a preventive plan to decrease the chance of bladder infection.

Growth Removals
At some point, most owners will find unusual lumps and bumps on their pets’ bodies, especially as they get older. Lumps, masses, or tumors are basically abnormal growths that can appear on or just under the skin. They can appear anywhere on the body and grow in different cell types. Some are slow-growing, and some can grow rather quickly. We see many types of tumors or masses in dogs and cats. A small sample taken with a needle can help tell the type of growth and if removal is indicated. This will be done by your primary veterinarian.

Lump removals are intended to remove dangerous or unwanted growths from your pet. The goal is to remove abnormal tissue so it cannot cause problems either by growing too large, damaging surrounding tissue, or spreading to other places inside the body. Please note the recurrence of certain tumors is possible despite appropriate surgical removal. We often recommend sending the removed tissue to our lab so a histopathologist can review and determine if any other action needs to be taken. We can have the lab results sent to your primary veterinarian (with your permission) for review and additional follow-up care to help prevent recurrence or spread of the tumor.

Exploratory Surgery
Pets are curious creatures. They often put things in their mouths to carry around or just play with. Sometimes, these items end up getting swallowed. Intestinal foreign bodies or simply foreign bodies is a term that refers to any material other than food that is eaten by a pet and results in a serious digestive problem in the stomach. Foreign bodies such as, but not limited to, toys, strings, clothing, plastic, bones, rocks, and food wrappers can become lodged and create an obstruction. Any household objects your pet chews on can become a foreign body problem needing urgent veterinary attention. Intestinal blockage symptoms can be easy to brush off as merely an upset stomach unless you witness your pet swallow a foreign object. Common symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite and energy, painful abdomen to the touch, and whining. Your veterinarian will likely take an x-ray to determine if a foreign body is present and if surgery is needed. Sometimes the foreign body is obvious, but often, the foreign body itself may not be seen by the x-rays. An obstructive pattern of gas-distended intestines can imply there is something causing a blockage. When this happens, and there is not an obvious cause of obstruction on x-ray, exploratory surgery is necessary. Exploratory surgery is just as it sounds; we will need to explore things that could not be found on x-rays. Sometimes we may find that there is no foreign body but another cause of intestinal blockages such as twisted intestines or a growth. Getting to surgery as soon as possible will give your pet the best chance of survival. An intestinal blockage is an urgent, life-threatening matter!
A gastropexy or stomach tack is a surgical procedure performed in large breed dogs to prevent gastric dilatation and volvulus (GDV), also known as bloat. This is suggested to be performed early in life (usually at the same time as a spay/ neuter. Most often referred to as “bloat,” GDV occurs when a dog’s stomach fills up with gas and twists, cutting off blood and oxygen to the stomach. In a gastropexy, our veterinarians will surgically ‘tack’ the stomach to the right side of the body wall. This will hold the stomach in place, preventing it from making the twist that results in GDV. Please note that your dog could still bloat after a gastropexy is done. The tacking of the stomach stops the dangerous part of bloat, which is the twisting of the stomach. Your pet’s stomach can still fill up with air or food and bloat, but if the tacking holds, the stomach will not twist. This gives you more time to get your dog in for treatment without the stomach twisting.
Umbilical Hernia Repair
A hernia occurs when an organ pushes through an opening in the muscle or tissue that holds it in place. One will most likely notice a bulge or lump in the affected area. They are most commonly located at the umbilicus (belly button area), inguinal (groin area), perineal (next to rectum area), or in the diaphragm (the muscle between the chest and the abdomen). They can be congenital (present from birth) or traumatic (caused by trauma). The type of hernia will depend on treatment; most hernias are surgically repaired by replacing the tissue where it belongs and closing the hole in the muscle. We will provide you with detailed instructions for post-operative care. ​The post-operative care and monitoring component of recovering from a hernia repair is just as important as the surgery. As the owner, you will need to be attentive by carefully monitoring your pet after surgery and ensuring that your pet wears a cone around the collar to prevent rubbing or aggravating the area.
Cryptorchid Surgery

Your dog can be diagnosed with cryptorchidism when either one or both of its testicles have failed to descend into the scrotum. Cryptorchidism is not a painful condition. However, it is important to neuter these dogs to avoid any future health issues. Contact us today to learn more about how to treat cryptorchidism.

Cryosurgery On Lesions
Cryosurgery is the use of extreme cold to eliminate diseased or potentially problematic tissue. This process is less invasive than traditional surgeries and does not require anesthesia. Cryosurgery is also useful on small lesions on the skin. It is not done on large masses, internal masses or growths under the skin.