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Archived Message

by Angela
Spaying...worried Hi everyone. I am bringing my little 6 month old girl to be spayed tomorrow morning. I'm sick to my stomach with worry! As this is my first puppy, I can't help but feel nervous about this procedure. I'm writing because I know I can count on all of you wonderful people that visit this site regularly for some reassurance that I have nothing to worry about and that she'll come out of this fine. I'm sitting here, wondering whether I'm making the right decision by having this done to her, and it doesn't help that they have to keep her at the vet overnight, away from me. I do trust my vet and he's always been so gentle and loving handling her ever since the first time we brought her here. I have a feeling that only one day (Friday to Saturday) will more than likely be one of the longest in my life. Thanks for any thoughts...


I can't tell you not to worry, because I'm sick with worry every time I bring one of my pets in for any sort of procedure. However, I can say that first of all, modern anesthetics are very safe, and the risks of spaying are low. Maybe this will help assure you that you are doing the right thing: Dogs who aren't spayed have a much higher rate of mammary tumors (breast cancer), uterine cancer, and pyometria.. all of which is absolutly horrible for dogs. By spaying before their first heat (around 6 months is usually considered good), you eliminate the possiblity of uterine cancer or pyometria (painful and often deadly diseases) and practically eliminate the risk of mammary cancer (the likelihood drops by something like 95%). I won't even get into the problems of keeping an unspayed female around if you have never bred dogs before. btw.. for the male dog owners having decision making trouble .. neutering elimintates the possiblity of testicular cancer and almost eliminates the possiblity of prostate problems, it also may cut down on territorial agression and other behavior problems. As far as keeping her overnight goes, that is the best thing for her. She will need to rest and be watched carefully after the procedure, and thats the best place for it. Don't worry.. she will still love you just as much afterwards, maybe more.

Taffy and I wish you all the best! Will someone be at the Vets all night? Thats why I haven't taken Taffy yet. I need to, but just can't yet. Thats my downfall I know. I know everyone on this site will be thinking of you and your baby. I will be anxious to hear from you after so please post a message and let us know how you both are doing!!! If you have any concerns, there are many people here who have been where you are now, and will answer your questions!! Try to relax, I am sure all will be fine!
Robin K.
Angela, I went through the same thing with my BriAnna. She is 1 year and 1 mo. old now and she was just spayed last month. My vet also insisted she stay over night-so I changed vet's. Her new vet let me pick her up 3 hours after the procedure. She has a heart murmur so I was sooo scared something would happen to her, but everything turned out fine. I could have never left her overnight. They tell you they keep them over for observation, so I asked them if someone would be there overnight with her and they said no but someone will stop once in the night and check. I felt if something were to happen and she was alone I wouldn't have been able to forgive myself so that is why I changed vet's. Remember-this is your dog and you have the legal right to take her home with you. Maybe you should go there tomorrow after the procedure and demand they release your dog to you. She'll be better off at home with you. But anyway don't worry-I'm sure she'll do fine!I
Angela, you sound like you know not to worry, but need to hear it from "the gang". I'll be in your shoes in two months and although neutering a male is less invasive than spaying a female, they still have to go under the anesthesia which is the scary part for me. To help the time pass during your separation, why not spend some of it making doggie biscuits? It'll be over before you know it. Good luck...
Angela, Don't Worry! I've had two girls spayed and they both stayed overnight without any problems (one eight years ago and one recently) Six months is the best age to have this done for your baby's health and I'm sure all will go well. Bailey and I wish you and your lots of luck.
Robin D.
(If this posts twice, forgive me, my computer has gone buggy, or it may just be me today, I'm all out of sorts :)

I just want to thank you all for your responses, my heart is lighter thanks to all of you! I must say, this seems to be be the longest day of my life! I was a mess this morning and I'm still a mess now as I write this to all of you. I dropped her off at 9:00 a.m. and, with a heavy heart, I left, and cried a good cry for about three hours, it was uncontrolable. They reassured me that all would be okay, that she would be fine and be back home tomorrow. I insisted that I wanted her home tonight and they said no that she needed to stay there for observation until tomorrow. Telling me to not worry is a lot easier said then done! I know this procedure is a good one for her, and that she will benefit from this, but that being said, it was still a very hard decision for me to make. I think I mentioned this is my first puppy, and you know, I can't remember what my life was like before her. I know you all probably feel the same way about your little ones. The house is quiet tonight, no noise from her squeaky toys, or munching of one kibble at a time, no one sitting on my lap now as I sit here typing, just a very strange feeling all around. I will write again, when she is home, safe, with her mother and father, who happen to love her more than life itself. Thank you all for listening, I'm going to clean and try to keep my mind busy (which in all honesty, will not happen!)

A very appreciative, worried, neurotic, basket case mother, Angela

I'll be in your shoes in about six weeks & I know I will be a nervous wreck also. But all the good it will do my sweet Phoebe to be spayed is tops on my list. She had to have a few teeth extracted at fourteen weeks and I nearly came unglued! But I survived and she was much happier afterwards. I know you will worry, but something I use constantly to help relieve worry is to repeat the Serenity Prayer in my head - it really helps me! A good time to take up needlepoint - or whatever, if my hands are busy then my mind doesn't wander so much. Good luck!
Leslie R
I won't tell you not to worry you are going to anyway. She will be fine. The new anesthetics are a lot better. I don't understand that your vet wants to keep her overnight. My vet never keeps them overnight. I picked up Alex in the afternoon with a sheet of instructions and a phone number in case of an emergency. It's better to have her spayed, it's a mess when they are in heat. And you have to be careful that no other dog get's her pregnant. Besides cancer, they can also have a lot of false pregnancy's. We had a dachshund that we ended up having spayed at the age of 10 years old because of that. You are doing the right thing.
Hi again, just me, again. Hope you all dont mind listening to my jibberish tonight. I too was concerned about her staying overnight and I voiced that to her doctor. He said she needed to stay for "observation". What concerns me is that I asked him if there would be anyone there through the night and he said no. So I (being the ever inquisitive one that I am!) :) asked him then who would be "observing" her through the night. He didn't really have an answer, just that "if I thought there would be any complications, I would have her transferred to our emergency vet who would keep an eye on her." I can see if someone was going to be there making sure everything is okay, but there isnt. Maybe I should look into another vet, so that the next time, she can come home the same day. She's probably sleeping right now, but at the same time, I know if she awakens during the night, she'll probably feel so very scared and alone and that hurts me. Thank goodness this day is over! A couple of more hours....thanks again everyone, you've all done a world of good for me to ease my mind these past couple of hours. You have no idea how much having this site and all of you out there have helped. I will be sure to give Socks an extra BIG hug when she gets home. :)
Just a comment on keeping females overnight after spaying: Although I supose there are some vets that just want the extra fee, most vets have the animals health in mind when making this decision. They need a clean, quiet place to rest and recover from the anesthesia, most dogs will get too excited and jump around too much when sent home. Also, if there are if there are complications, they can treat them right away (these are very rare of course). On the other hand, most vets do not have a night staff (the last place I worked at did have someone there until around 1:00 a.m, but in my area this is rare), where as you are going to be there to watch your pet, and if there are problems you could take them to an animal emergency room (if there is one nearby). I think the decision should be reached between the vet and the owner, with the dog's best interest at heart. I must say, I saw less problems with dogs that were kept overnight then ones that were sent home right away, but a lot of it depends on the dog and how excitable they are, and the family (are there kids that will get her excited or hurt her accidentally? is there someone who will be home all day to watch her?). With a small dog like a Maltese, its usually ok to keep them home, as long as they are confined to their crate for the first day or so, but again, it really depends on the individual. If you choose this option, make sure you understand common problems that can occur with spaying and what to do about them (the vet should explain or offer some writen literature on this).
Angela, By the time you read this post, your baby should be home! Just wanted to wish you both a speedy recovery! I am still trying to get the courage to go to the new vet to get Taffy spayed, since the old one will not let me bring her home after. The "new" one was where I had my aging poodle put to rest, and I haven't been able to bring myself to walk back in there, but I know I need to. Please keep us informed of her progress!
Robin K.
Hi again everyone! I picked by baby up this morning at 11:00, what a relief! The procedure went well, and she was up and about when I picked her up. A little groggy and tired, but oh so happy to see us. There were no problems and no fever which was a great relief. They did extract a tooth while she was under, which the vet said was common. I brought her home and stayed with her all day, watching her, making sure she didn't lick herself too much. Although she looked okay from the outside I knew by looking in her eyes that she was still in a lot of pain (who wouldnt be!). She tried all day to lay down, but no sooner than she did that, she would jump right back up again to her feet. The discomfort must be frustrating for her. This went on for hours and I felt so helpless on account that I couldn't do a thing to ease her pain except talk to her, stroke her and tell her over and over that I loved her. She is a very spoiled puppy as she sleeps in our bed every night, and usually she finds a spot, and is out like a light, but not tonight. Ive got every piece of fleece clothing, blanket etc., on the bed in the hopes that the softness of it will help her get comfortable. I will keep you posted on how shes doing and again, Socks sends her love and thanks for being there for her and her worried mom. If there's anything I can ever do for anyone, anything, call on me. You are all in my thoughts! Angela & Socks
So glad to hear you and your baby survived. I'm on wits end as Tasha is 4and 1/2 mos. old. My vet also wants to spay her at 6 mos. it just seems so young. I dread the day I have to take her in. I'm not sure if they will keep her over night, I almost hope so as my little baby is so active and a jumper, I'm afraid of pulling the stiches out. Will post again in 6 weeks on this subject. I'm already a basket case!
Angela - Am glad all went well and that you decided to leave her with the vet overnight. That way she got complete rest and they could keep an eye on her. If you went in for a hysterectomy would you want to do it as an out patient? The other thing to keep in mind is that our dogs feel our anxiety all too well. Your vet suggests what is best for the dog and I'm glad he stuck by his guns. Next time you need his help, remember how this experience was for the dog.
Dottie, I too was worried about pulling them out, but have no fear, the stitches will dissolve on their own. You won't have to do it yourself. I wont tell you not to worry, because its impossible, the more I tried not to, the more I did. I tried to keep busy (the house is spotless :) but that proved fruitless. She was the only thing I thought of all day and night. If you need a comforting shoulder, this site is the place to get it. Everyone was so helpful and understanding, more so than my friends who do not own dogs. My Mom and Dad were great for a sympathetic ear, I cried on their shoulders for a couple of hours. Nothing like a lot of TLC from them and Mom's home cooking to make me feel better. They love Socks and worried right along with me. Her only problem now is that the sutures are itching her so bad. I'm waiting until the vet opens to see if there is something I can put on her that will help relieve the itching. Im afraid while I'm at work, not watching her as I have been this weekend, that she will stratch it too much and cause the wound to open. Does anyone have experience with this?? If so, please post, I would love to hear from you. Vivian, my only concern about her staying overnight was that she was alone there from 10:00 pm to 7 am. My worry was that heaven forbid something should happen, who would be there to take care of her and another worry, was that I knew she'd be scared and I couldn't be there to comfort her. That helpless feeling. Yes, she did need the rest, and I knew, had she seen me, she would have gotten excited and that wouldnt have been good for her. The main thing is that she is home with us and all is going well. I cannot thank you all enough.
Angela, One of the things I like about this site is I have learned I'm not the only one who is head over heals about their little Maltese baby. I never even had a dog before I got Angel 3-1/2 years ago nor did I want one. When my husband & I decided to get a dog, we put LOTS of thought into it and I did a lot of research before deciding on a breed and now we can't imagine life without Angel. I went through the same feeling about spaying. I was actually sick to my stomach with worry. And my vet kept her overnight also which made me worry even more. I kept wondering what my little sweetie was thinking about being left there all alone. And even though this all happened 3 years ago, I still remember when I went to pick her up...she put her little paws around my neck (like a hug). I felt so bad for leaving her. But Angela, it really is for the best and I had the same concerns as you...why do they need to be there if no one is there anyway? I'm sure little Socks will be as good as new in no time. And the next time I took Angel to the vet I thought she'd be traumatized but she wasn't at all. Socks is lucky to have a mom who worries about her so much and it is good for me to see I'm not alone in feeling so much love for our little babies. Give socks a kiss from me.
Sandee M.
Thank you for your support. I made the mistake of looking on the website about spaying a dog, and now after seeing the procedure in black and white I'm really a basket case. My Vets office is closed on Tues. I have to take Tasha in early Mon. morn. and then pick her up that night. I almost wished they would kep her over night. I can only do it on Mon. as that is my day off, I'm not sure I want to put my little doggie and myself thru this. But I know I really have to. I'm soooooo scared.!!
With the disolvable sutures I've seen more local reactions in dogs (like itching, irritation, redness), but usually its not too bad. You may want to get an elizabethan collar for when you aren't home at least so she can't lick (those lampshade things). Some dogs will react to disolvable sutures, and sometimes they have to be replaced with something else (like staples or non-disolvable). This of course means an extra visit to have them removed, and the annoyance of removing them in general, but sometimes it necessary. I'm so glad Socks is home and feeling better.. what a cute name btw:)
Sandee, consider it done! Socks loves hugs. Lots of them, and.I'm more than happy to oblige. Aimee, thank you for the compliment on her name. She named herself, as the first day we brought her home she went right after our socks and hence, her name. She still does this to this day, only now, when I open the door where the hamper is, she grabs all the socks she can and drags them into her crate. :) She's doing much much better today, running around, as if nothing happened. She also got a good nights sleep last night, finally! The sutures do not seem to be bothering her too much and the wound looks so much better. Thanks so much for everything, again. I know I sound like a broken record, but I can't help it. Love to you all from Socks and I.

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