When a cat has been scheduled to have a procedure that requires an anaesthetic to be administered, the following instructions should be followed.
- Do not allow your cat to eat after 8 pm the night before the procedure.
- Water is allowed up until admission.
- Bring your cat in at the arranged time.
- Advise us of any problems your cat has had with anaesthesia in the past.
- Advise us of any drug allergies your cat has.
- If your cat is receiving medications ask us prior to giving them on the morning of the procedure. If in doubt DO NOT give the medication and advise us at admission.
In order to minimise the risks of anaesthesia our staff use only the best anaesthetic agents and equipment. Our staff will closely monitor the cat before, during and after the procedure. In some cats it is necessary to shave areas of fur for the placement of drips and some of the anaesthetic monitoring equipment. The areas that are often shaved are on the front legs, the wrist and under the tail. If blood tests need to be taken there may also be a shaved area under the neck. If a surgery is being performed there will be a large amount of fur shaved around the surgery site. Ultrasound examinations will also need to have fur shaved.
We routinely measure heart rate, breathing rate, blood oxygen levels, breath carbon dioxide levels, gum colour and refill, blood pressure and depth of anaesthesia. Measuring all of these allows us to identify and correct any abnormalities that can arise during anaesthesia before they become a problem. Despite taking all precautions it is possible that complications, including death, can still occur in very rare circumstances.
Cats discharged the same day anaesthesia was performed may still be slightly sedated when arriving home and should be confined inside in a warm quiet environment for the first night. All signs of sedation should be gone in less then 24 hours.
Unless advised otherwise, cats may be offered a small meal and water when arriving home. Many cats have “shrunken” stomachs from being fasted and will vomit if allowed to eat a large meal immediately. Don’t be alarmed if they are not interested in food that evening but if they are not back to normal the following morning then it is best to contact the clinic.
If you have any questions about your cats anaesthetic or procedure, please feel free to ask.