When a pet needs surgery, it can be an overwhelming experience for both the pet and their family. However, pet parents have an important role to play to ensure the best possible outcome, both before and after the surgery.

Step 1: Relax

First thing to do is try to relax. Your pet can sense your distress. If the surgery is being performed at The COVE, rest assured it will be in the hands of one of our board-certified veterinary specialists or experienced veterinarians who has extensive training and education.

There are several departments here at The COVE that provide surgical services including emergency and critical care, dentistry, and or course surgery, led by board-certified veterinary surgeon Jeff T. Stallings, DVM, DACVS.

Step 2: Be Informed

Talk to your veterinarian and members of the support staff before any surgery to make sure you understand everything that is happening and why. Being fully informed will help you skillfully handle the situation with confidence and improve your dog or cat’s chances of a successful recovery. You’ll need to know of any special needs or restrictions your pet will require after the surgery so you can make the proper arrangements beforehand.

At The COVE, we provide pet parents with all of the information regarding their furry companion’s procedure and recovery.  Our team is always happy to answer any additional questions.

Step 3: Follow Pre-Op Directions

You might be instructed not to feed your pet or let them drink water before going under anesthesia. It is essential to follow ALL pre-op instructions that are tailored for your pet and their procedure. Here is an example of the pre-op instructions The COVE provides to pet parents.

Step 4: Surgery and Hospitalization

When you drop off your pet, know they are in the hands of people who know what they’re doing and who care about animals as much as you do.

Here at The COVE, we provide your pet a pre-operation checkup to make sure they are healthy enough to proceed with surgery.

After the surgery, your pet will be monitored closely by hospital staff. Your pet may need to stay at the hospital for a day or two, depending on the procedure. Here at At The COVE, all of our patients are monitored closely by our experienced, compassionate, and licensed team members – 24/7.

Step 4: Recovery

After surgery, you will be informed about what kind of home care your pet will need and instructions for any prescribed medications. At The COVE, we provide personalized home care instructions for each pet patient. You may need to change bandages, have your pet wear an E-collar (cone), or keep them in a small, confined area for a while. Your pet won’t understand that they have to remain relatively still, so it’s up to you to find a safe, quiet space for them to relax. This will help them keep calm and comfortable during their recovery.

Your dog or cat may be groggy from anesthesia or pain medication. That is a normal response, and is why it is important that they get proper rest following their procedure. Watch them carefully during the first few hours at home. If they seem abnormally lethargic, are vomiting, bleeding, or showing signs of distress, please call us immediately.

Animals are very resilient. By working together, we will help promote a speedy and healthy recovery for your furry loved one.

When Your Pet Needs Surgery – Trust in the Expertise at The COVE

While all veterinarians are trained to perform surgery, only a fraction go on to pursue advanced specialty training. If your pet requires surgery – especially if it’s a complex procedure – there’s a tremendous advantage in having it performed by someone with the depth of experience of a board-certified veterinary surgeon such as Dr. Stallings.

If you have any questions about our surgery department or would like to schedule a consultation, please call 757-935-9111.

And remember, The COVE is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We are located at 6550 Hampton Roads Pkwy, #113, Suffolk, VA, and welcome your call anytime, day or night.

About Us

The COVE’s veterinarians and staff wholeheartedly embrace the core values of community, collaboration, commitment, compassion, and integrity. This focus ensures that pets, the people who love them, and their primary care veterinarians have as positive and affirming a healthcare experience as possible, regardless of the circumstances that bring us all together.