Soft tissue is a term covering any area of a pet’s body that is not bone or cartilage. Your pet may need soft tissue surgery because of an injury, to repair a birth defect, or to remove a foreign object that has been ingested. Peace Arch Veterinary Hospital of Surrey, B.C., looks at facts about soft tissue surgery.
Spay and Neuter
Perhaps the most common types of soft tissue surgery done by vets are spaying and neutering operations. These not only render pets unable to have babies, but studies show that it increases their lives. Spaying and neutering usually make pets less aggressive and eliminate their chances of getting illnesses or cancers of the reproductive organs.
Another common soft tissue surgery is tumor removal. Some tumors may just need to be biopsied to determine if they are cancerous. Lumps and bumps are common in pets, especially older pets. Always have your veterinarian look at a bump that feels hard or suddenly starts growing. Some cancers can be managed if they are caught early enough.
Male dogs or cats that have not been neutered tend to get hernias when they are older. However, hernias can appear at any age. Some dog breeds are more prone to hernias than others, including boxers, collies, Boston terriers, and Welsh corgis. Pets have a great chance of full recovery if caught early. The symptoms of a hernia include a distended abdomen, problems walking, problems peeing or pooping, and being more tired than usual.
It’s common for dogs to tear their anterior cruciate ligaments or ACLs, especially larger breeds like retrievers, Chow Chows, mastiffs, St. Bernards, Newfoundlands, Rottweilers, and Akitas. Not all ACL tears require surgery. However, up to half of the dogs that tear one ACL will eventually tear the other. Symptoms of ACL tears are crying when moving, limping, holding the hurt leg out to one side, and a strange clicking sound when the dog walks.
Getting Your Pet Ready for Surgery
Unless it’s an emergency, your pet needs a thorough exam by your veterinarian to make sure he or she is healthy enough for surgery. Your pet may need diagnostic tests like X-rays or an ultrasound. Pets need to fast before surgery so they do not vomit while under anesthesia. Pets usually need to have all of their recommended vaccinations before elective surgery.
Taking Care of Your Pet After Surgery
Pets need a quiet, warm, clean place to recover after surgery. Make sure you follow our veterinarian’s instructions for any medications that need to be given or any special cleaning of the surgical site that needs to be done. Contact us immediately if the surgical site gets swollen, hot, or begins leaking.
Schedule an Appointment with Our Veterinarian in Surrey
If you still have questions about soft tissue surgery and live in the Surrey area of British Columbia, contact Peace Arch Veterinary Hospital today. Call us at (604) 536-3131 for more information or to schedule an appointment with our veterinarian.