If you cat is also being spayed or neutered at the time of the declaw this will be done first. Your cat will then be declawed. Pressure bandages will be applied to the feet of your cat and will remain on the feet for 24 hours. A technician will call you after the procedure is complete with an update on your cat. Your cat will stay overnight with us. We will need to remove the bandages the morning after the procedure. After your cat has been evaluated the morning after surgery, they are able to go home. If you are not able to be home with your cat the day after surgery, it is preferred that you wait until the afternoon to pick up your cat.
Once you have been checked out by our front staff. A technician will then review with you your pet’s aftercare. They will discuss any medications your pet will go home with as well as what you need to do post-surgery. You will be given a discharge sheet that has your post-operative instructions on it for you to refer to if needed. Please be aware because your pet has been intubated during surgery, they may have a cough. Please let us know if this lasts more than a couple of days or becomes severe.
Feeding: Your pet may not want to eat full meals for the first 24 hours. We recommend feeding ½ the normal amount for the first meal after surgery, then gradually increase meals to the normal amount fed.
Activity: Your pet may sleep for the first 24 hours following surgery. This is normal. If they seem excessively tired, please contact us. For routine surgeries, our patients are typically back to their normal selves within 24-36 hours. If this was a major abdominal surgery, mass removal, orthopedic surgery, or emergency surgery, it may take up to 48 hours for your pet to feel normal. For all surgical procedures, with the exception of a dental, confinement/cage rest and leash walks only is recommended for the first 10-14 days while the incision is healing. Please refrain from bathing, submerging the incision(s), or allowing your pet to swim for at least 14 days.
Incision: Please make sure that Your pet is not licking or itching the incision. As hair begins to grow, they can become quite itchy. If your pet is licking or itching the incision, then you may need to use an Elizabethan (cone) collar and/or keep the incision covered. Please call us to discuss your options to prevent damage to the incision. The incision should be inspected at least twice daily. Unfortunately, your pet may not know when to stop and may damage the incision or may help it to become infected. If you notice any redness, oozing, or extensive bruising/swelling, please call us for an appointment to recheck the incision.
Some pets find it comforting to have cool compresses on the incision twice daily for 5 mins for the first 2 days, then warm compresses similarly thereafter.
Sutures: If your pet has external skin sutures or staples, they should be removed 10-14 days following the surgery. Sutures under the skin will be dissolved by the body in 2 weeks – 2 months. Occasionally, you may see a knot from these sutures pop through the skin. If this happens after 10-14 days following the surgery, we would be happy to remove the suture for you.
Litterbox: Replace the normal granular litter with the specially formulated dust-free pelleted litter provided for you for the first 2-3 days. Never use clumping litter during this period. This is important, as small granules of litter can adhere to or enter the surgical sites and cause infection or delay healing.
Exercise: Restricting a cat’s activity is difficult, but mandatory for appropriate healing. Discourage your pet from jumping on furniture or counter tops for the first week after surgery by blocking access to these areas. If you see your pet on a countertop or high furniture, help them down. Cats primarily use their back legs to jump UP, but may injure the surgical sites when they jump DOWN and land on their front paws.
Bleeding: Occasionally, a cat will break open one of the incisions and a few drops of blood may ooze out. This blood should clot rapidly and form a small scab. Please notify a veterinary hospital if you observe continuous bleeding from the surgical site. Do not attempt to clean the paws or administer any topical medications without first consulting a veterinarian.
Under what circumstances should I contact my veterinarian?
If your pet’s feet appear very swollen or bleed frequently and profusely.
If your pet is reluctant to walk after four to five days at home.
PLEASE USE THE PROVIDED LITTER (YESTERDAY’S NEWS) FOR A MINIMUM OF 2-3 DAYS BEFORE SWITCHING BACK TO YOUR REGULAR LITTER.