Anesthesia and your Pet

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If your pet is going under anesthesia for a veterinary procedure, you might be concerned and wondering how to prepare. Pre-procedure, a thorough physical examination and medical history will be conducted. This could help detect any abnormalities in the heart and lungs which would change how anesthesia affects your pet. In general, older animals have less tolerance for the depression in heart function that anesthesia causes and may recover more slowly. Additionally, certain breeds are prone for sensitivity to anesthesia. As a result, their vital signs will be monitored especially carefully during a procedure.

Here are some tips if your pet is undergoing an anesthetic procedure:

  • Communicate any health concerns or changes to your vet prior to the procedure.
  • Withhold all food for 12 hours prior to the procedure. Should your pet vomit during the procedure, this decreases the chance of food aspiration into the lungs. Check with your vet if water should be withheld as well.
  • Follow your vet’s discharge instructions and follow up with any concerns. Keep in mind that animals recovering from an anesthetic procedure may act unpredictably for a few days.