Aftercare Tips For Pets Post-Surgery

It’s difficult to remember all the details the vet gives when following their surgery!

  When your beloved furry friend undergoes surgery, it’s a scary, anxious, and nerve-racking time, and finally, when they’re out, you’re just relieved that everything went well, that all the post-care instructions your vet gives you slips your mind. This is common and we completely understand!   The Vet Set is here to support your pet’s wellness through prevention and, when needed, surgery. It’s important to know how to care for your pet post-surgery, so take a moment today and learn more about what you can do after a pet’s surgical procedure.

Aftercare For Pets Post-Surgery

  Once you’re reunited with your pet you don’t always hear all the details or ask the questions you need because you’re overcome with relief and excitement that your pet is well. While it’s common to provide handouts to take home to address care for your pet after surgery, it can get lost in the transition of everything. Below we’ll address common things you can do to help your pet recover after surgery.   Help keep your pet calm.   Anesthesia can affect your pet differently every time they go under, so even though they were out and about playing after last time, it could be a different story this time.   The best way you can accommodate your pet is by keeping them calm and relaxed, and sometimes this means quarantining them. Keep them in a quiet, comfortable space where they can rest and find refuge in if they seem a little out of it.   They may need to just rest so a confined space provides the opportunity to heal in peace — especially if you have a home with other animals.   Help your pet in temperature regulation.   When pets are coming off of anesthesia, their body can be overwhelmed and have a difficult time maintaining their body heat. It’s important to help them stay warm in this time of healing so give them ample blankets they can curl up in to stay toasty and comfortable.   Monitor your pets food and water.   It is encouraged to have your pet eat and drink after surgery, but always check with your vet beforehand. If you need to, give your vet a call and check in about what needs to happen — it’s never pleasant for your pet to have to deal with vomiting or an upset stomach as a result eating too soon after surgery. Create a safe environment.   Anesthesia can leave your pet a bit disoriented and things like their coordination and perception may be impaired, so do a once over before they come home and ensure it’s a safe place for them to roam.   Remove any tripping hazards such as cords or rugs and block the stairs and sharp corners if they’re prone to falling.   Be gentle with your pet.   If your pet has bandages or splints, they may have a hard time getting around — things like jumping onto the couch, or even get out to the backyard to use the bathroom, may be a chore for your pet.   If you have to help them get around, be gentle and mindful of their post-surgery site.      Be mindful of the other pet interactions.   If you have other pets at home, it’s important to keep an eye on what they’re all doing. Although dogs can be elated that their friend is home, cats can be more aggressive and view the animal as foreign because of the new smells and different behavior the pet may have.      Greeting the others may be too much at first which is why a quarantined spot is important — for everyone’s health and safety.   Post-surgery can be a confusing time but when you have an idea or checklist of what to do, it can make the transition better for everyone — animals included!  

To learn more about the vet services we offer in our Carroll Gardens office, reach out today!

 

How To Prepare For Your Dog’s Death

This is the tough, heartbreaking part of being a dog parent — preparing and for and helping your dog at the end of life.

  Death is a tough subject to cover for anyone in your family, including your furry best friend. Your dog is someone you’ve been with since the beginning and together you’ve likely gotten through some rough patches and experienced some really fun ones too! It’s hard to think that their time here is so short, you want them to be around forever to hug, snuggle, and play with, but unfortunately, this isn’t the case.   If your dog is at the end of life, Vet Set is here to help provide care and act as a resource for all your needs in this extremely difficult time. Our vet hospital has empathetic staff members in an environment that is calming. Take a moment, sit with your dog, and read more about how you can better prepare for your dog’s death.

Preparing For The Day

  If your dog is in the last stage of their life, you know the day is coming, but how do you prepare for it? Below we’ll touch on some considerations, but everyone grieves and handles things differently, so there is no right or wrong way.   Plan for arrangements   Just as you would with a human, making arrangements is a large part in the end-of-life care. Although this is the last thing you want to think of, you want to arrange what you’ll do with the body after your dog passes.   Doing this ahead of time takes some of the stress out of the equation so you have more time to grieve rather than spend energy trying to make decisions. Many options are available including burial, cremation, and veterinary disposal. If you have any questions about what these entail, you can connect with your local vet for more information.   Keep in mind that each option may come with additional decisions or tasks such as health department approval, burial urns, or special caskets, so doing this ahead of time can make things easier.   Talk with all the members in your family, and together, come up with the ideal way to honor your dog after they pass.   Make Your Dog Comfortable   Depending on where they’re at, make your dog feel as comfortable and cherished as possible. This is giving them all the TLC in the end stages with lots of blankets, delicious treats, and helpful pain management products such as CBD.   Connect with your vet and discuss other ways to make your dog comfortable or if any other measures may be needed.     Prepare Emotionally   This is the step that none of us will ever get right because there is no right way, and even trying to prepare yourself we’ll never be the same as the day it happens. So, in all the sadness and grief, allow yourself to feel all the feels. Truthfully, you may feel ready and prepared, and then the day comes and you realize it’s completely different than you thought.   Look into the stages of grief and look for support from your family and friends — be with those who loved your dog and reminisce over funny stories and photos.   Inform Your Children   Whether your kids are young or are away at college, it’s important to talk to them about where your dog is at and to help prepare them for the death. It’s important to talk about it beforehand so they can also have a chance to prepare and say their goodbyes.   Depending on the age of your children, you may have to answer some heavy and big questions, so it’s important that you prepare ahead of time, yet still talk openly and honestly with them.   Make Time   Our lives are stressful and hectic and in these moments, remember to pause and take time away to spend them with your dying dog. In the end, no one ever laments that they spent too much time with them at the end, so get some quality time in. If they’re up for it, take them on their favorite walk or play with them in the yard and enjoy these last moments.   Feeding them their favorite treats and just snuggling with your furry friend is cathartic for you both — being present with your dog and nearby can be comforting as you let them know that you’re by their side.   Create Keepsakes   When your dog is near the end, this is the time to take some photos and make some keepsakes. Oftentimes, people will have a cast of their paw print made, or if your dog has long hair, collect it and make it into a hat or scarf. Whatever makes sense for you, create a memento that you can remember your dog by.     Planning for and making arrangements for the death of your dog is one of the toughest and most painful experiences to go through, but it’s important to help guide and comfort your companion in this time.   Once they are gone take the time and remember the good and cherished time you had with them. Look at pictures and surround yourself with loved ones to tell tales of the good ol’ days or grab a box of tissues and watch Marley and Me!  

If your dog is near the end, there are many things we can do to help in this transition. Connect with us today and learn about our services.  

11 Tangible Ways to Help Your Aging Dog (Part Two)

Keep your dog comfortable and improve their quality of life as they reach their golden years!

  In part one, we began our exploration into practical ways you can assist your dog as they age, such as modifying their eating area and implementing ramps and steps. In today’s blog, we have additional things you can do to help keep your senior comfortable around the house.   The Vet Set in Carroll Gardens is the place to bring your pooch for the ultimate in veterinary medicine. We provide senior dogs with the best options and treatments that you won’t find in a traditional vet clinic. Try dog acupuncture or CBD to support inflammation and pain and improve their immune system. Find unique vet services here!   Now, more ways to elevate and improve your dog’s comfort and quality of life below!

Make These Adjustments to Aid Your Aging Pup!

  Help reduce anxieties.   If your dog is near the end, they may be prone to anxiety because of their loss of senses. Many times their eyesight and hearing are impacted so when new people come over and want to dote and love on them, this can raise their anxiety because the attention is abrupt and alarming.   Help quell their anxiety by keeping them close when people come over or avoid a lot of new people in your home — especially small children!   Keep a healthy home.   Older dogs have an impaired and vulnerable immune system, so it’s critical to keep a healthy home. This not only means spatially with a clutter-free environment, but germ-wise as well. Clean and disinfect your home on a regular basis to keep everyone within it happy and healthy.   Accept puppy pads.   There will come a time when your senior dog will not always be able to make it outside to use the bathroom, so puppy pads are a must! It’s not fun for anyone, so if you are proactive and accept that eventually, you will need them, it may help you come to terms with this reality.   Incorporate soft or wet dog food.   A lifetime of chewing and chomping can leave your dog susceptible to teeth deterioration, which can make eating in old age more difficult or even painful. If you notice your dog isn’t eating, it could be a result of sore teeth.   Try incorporating softer foods or making a gravy to mix with their dry dog food. Dogs love wet canned food, so this also might be a great option to try.   If your dog still isn’t eating after trying new, softer foods, connect with your vet to ensure everything is a-ok.   Be proactive about their health.   Aging dogs require additional TLC and observing their health is crucial. This means paying a little bit more attention to what’s going on and addressing it if need be.   Be proactive in their health and regularly check their teeth, ears, and coat. Assess for any lumps or bumps or tender areas. A little extra attention can prevent or help with a diagnosis in the future.   Remember car safety.   If your dog loves to go for a ride, remember that as they age they have a much more difficult time getting in and out of the car.   You can find things to assist them in the car, in addition to modifiers that make it safer for them to ride in the car. When you incorporate these things, it makes getting in the car safer for you and your pooch and prevents any injuries they may sustain while riding along.   Minimize loud noise.   Unless your dog has hearing issues, eliminating loud noises can help them stay calm and eliminate any anxieties they may have. Overstimulating environments often find senior dogs completely terrified and shut down (think hiding in the bathroom), so keeping a peaceful home is extremely pertinent for your dog.   Sound therapy has helped senior dogs adjust by implementing calming music — classical and instrumental music — to help them adjust to the different sound frequencies of everyday life.     Your senior dog can absolutely have an amazing life towards the end stages when you make practical and easy adjustments to your home. Incorporate puppy pads and soft foods in combination with keeping a clean home, a safe car, and being diligent in preventative care.  

For a doggy wellness check-up, schedule a visit to our vet clinic in Carroll Gardens today!

 

11 Tangible Ways to Help Your Aging Dog (Part One)

Watching your dog go from a puppy to a senior can be challenging, which is why it’s vital to help them as they age.

  Your puppy will always be your puppy, even as a senior. Everyday activity becomes more challenging with an aging dog and navigating and modifying things for your dog can be very helpful to their quality of life.   At Vet Set, we are a comprehensive vet clinic in the Carroll Gardens area that specializes in dog care — from puppies to seniors. Join us in today’s post as we provide you with practical and tangible things you can do today to make your senior dog more comfortable.

Create an Aging-Friendly Home For Your Dog

  If you’re watching your dog transition into old age right before your eyes you may feel helpless, but you can both ease their discomfort and help them maneuver this time more easily with a couple of changes around your home. Find out how below.   Raise their food and water dishes.   Whether you have an aging Pug that is one with the ground or a Great Dane that towers, both could benefit from food and water dishes that are elevated.   Make a couple of measurements to find the ideal height for the dishes — you can then find feeders premade online (most are adjustable) or you can make one yourself.   When you raise their food and water dishes it creates less strain and helps them get the nourishment they need without any obstacles.   Ramp it up!   As dogs get older, they may get achy and stiff — just like us! You can help ease this discomfort through the use of pet ramps and steps. These modifiers help your pet get up and down steps, on furniture, and the bed with ease. It eliminates big jumps that could potentially lead to an accident or your pup injuring themselves.   Turn up the heat.   Hair loss is common in senior dogs and they will often lose clumps of it at a time, which leaves them vulnerable to colder temperatures.   Help them out by creating an inviting and warm temperature in your home during the colder months. You can either turn up the heat or, if they have their own little area, use a space heater and extra blankets to create a comfortable oasis.   If you have a dog prone to getting cold such as a Whippet, you may want to invest in some doggy sweaters or coats.   Impart consistency.   Elder dogs need habits, routines, and consistency. Create a schedule that they can follow on a pretty consistent basis. For example, have all their mealtimes at the same time every day, in addition to their outdoor time.   A consistent environment is also key for dogs dealing with vision impairments and dementia — ensure all their toys are in the same spot and your home doesn’t undergo any major shifts in where the furniture is located.   Senior proof your home.   Puppies and senior dogs have some things in common in that they’re prone to accidents and injuries. Just as you puppy proof your home, do the same for your aging dog.   Eliminate sharp objects such as furniture edges and sharp corners to help prevent any injuries. As time goes on, whether your dog begins to lose vision or spatial awareness, they’re more prone to run into things so give them a hand by making a few modifications to any hazardous spaces.   Watching your dog age and become a senior requires some adjustments to provide them with the optimal quality of life in their end stage. These last days can be comfortable for your dog when you help make their day-to-day activities more doable and are sensitive to their needs.   There are many ways to help ease your senior dog into a new stage of life such as modifying their food and water station, implementing ramps and steps, creating consistency, and proofing your home to avoid accidents and injuries.   This is just the beginning — get more useful tips in part two of our blog! Stay tuned!  

To schedule an appointment or to learn more about the senior dog services we offer such as acupuncture or pain management, reach out and connect with us today!

         

Cat Lovers Unite!

Because being a cat lady (or person) reveals so much about your personality!

  There are generally two types of people — dog lovers and cat lovers — they rarely cross over and surely won’t meet eye-to-eye on which animal is the best! So, what does being a cat lover say about your personality?   Cats love Vet Set! We’ve created a cat-friendly environment in our Carroll Gardens vet clinic where cats love to roam! Follow along in today’s post and see if you fit the personality that most cat lovers align with!

The Story of The Cat Lady  

  Cat people have long stood under the cultural archetype of the cat lady. She is a lady who tends to her cats and not much else. She foregoes human relationships in return for a purr-fect companionship with her cats — an ailurophile at its best!   What was once a scary and negative thing to become, millennials and gen Z are rewriting the narrative, flipping the script, and making the cat lady archetype something to be desired!   So, let’s embrace the cat lady story and explore the personality traits you too may have as a cat lover!   Do you own a cat and does this sound like you?  
  • Introvert - Many cat owners tend to be more introverted where they are rejuvenated by solace and drained by long-lasting social encounters, which may be attributed to a part of the cat lady narrative. The truth of the matter is, many introverts love to socialize just not for long periods of time.
  Other traits of an introvert include needing increased time to yourself, being a self-starter, and avoiding small talk.   Cats are a welcomed addtion to an introvert’s life because, they too, do things in their own way on their own time.    
  • Open - Being open is one of the big five traits in personality theory. It describes a person as being creative, imaginative, open-minded, sprinkled with a flexible attitude.
 
  • Neurotic - Being neurotic isn’t necessarily a negative trait though many may struggle with being emotionally volatile. Stress and worry can also play into neuroticism which can lead to anxiety and depression, but when neuroticism is well-managed, it can manifest in healthy ways and make you an extremely empathetic and thoughtful person.  
Cats are also known to display traits of neuroticism, so perhaps they’re like finding a kindred spirit — they just get it!  
  • Curious - Curious people tend to lean into difficulty instead of becoming critical and tend to listen without judgment, ask questions, and are abundantly present.
  Cats too are very curious and inquisitive — they want to explore the world around them and perhaps cause a little mischief while they’re at it!  
  • Unconventional - An unconventional personality is one that walks the fringe and sometimes can be seen as an outsider. They often live a life full of humor, articulateness, humility, and are great listeners.
  Cats are unconventional in that they’re a little unpredictable and they are a little out there on their own!  
  • Independent - This trait is marked by many things, being independent is also similar to being unconventional. You're not influenced by others and you’re keen not to drink the societal kool-aid. Distilled, you march to your own beat and aren’t concerned with what others think or have to say.
  Independence is a key trait in felines — how many times have you wanted to snuggle and they entertain the idea for a moment and then just nonchalantly pranced away? They too are the keepers of independence!   Those are just a few known personality traits that many cat lovers have in common, we’d love to hear how you stack up!   Why else own a cat?   Besides finding a friend in your furry feline, there are many reasons why people opt to adopt cats.   They’re virtually maintenance-free.   Besides having to clean and maintain the litter box and provide food and water, cats can virtually take care of themselves — the ultimate independent animal.   They can help reduce your stress.   Even though cats seem aloof and as if they don’t care, when you need a cuddle, cats are there for you. Just having them around in your quiet can help you reduce your stress and anxiety.   They can actually improve allergies.   If you’re an adult allergic to cats, sadly it’s too late to help quell allergies, but if you have a little one, it’s a perfect time! Studies have shown that children under the age of one who were exposed to cats developed fewer allergies!   It’s a great time to be a cat lady, as the stigma is slowly being changed and many are embracing the lifestyle! Cat people have very specific traits including introversion, openness, and independence and many people love them not only for their similar traits but the ease of owning a cat!  

If you’re defying the old cat lady narrative and embracing the new landscape, we can help keep your cat(s) healthy, happy, and playful as ever! Reach out to our vet clinic today.

 

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