Medical Concerns/Emergencies: Please call or text (802) 272-7402 or email info@vt-can.org (up until about 7:00 p.m.) if you have a medical concern. (Do not call this number unless you have a concern about an animal who had recent surgery at our clinic.) If you get voicemail, please leave a message. If no one has returned your call in 20 minutes, please try again.  If you feel you have a dire emergency and need to be seen right away, please call your own full-service vet, BEVS in Burlington at (802) 863-2387 or an emergency veterinary hospital near you.

Post-operative Instructions for Cats

1) You should keep your cat in the carrier or box until he/she can stand alone. Check your cat frequently for the next 6 to 8 hours while s/he is waking up from the anesthesia.  They may walk and act like they are drunk and be disoriented.  Do not try to handle cats for 24 hours or until they are acting normally.

2) It is a good idea to keep cat alone in a room overnight- away from other pets or children.  Room must be well ventilated and quiet.  Towards evening give the cat water and offer a small amount of food. If your cat is a kitten, feed the normal amount tonight, at your kitten’s regular feeding times (we recommend canned food for cats).

3) Your cat(s) may vomit periodically from the anesthetic within the first 24 hours after surgery.  Do not worry if your cat does not eat tonight, but s/he should be eating, drinking and acting better within 24 hours after surgery.  It is not uncommon for cats to be grumpy or agitated from the anesthesia.  If your cat is lethargic, not eating or drinking or vomiting after 24 hours, call us right away.

4) Females - Check incision daily for swelling or drainage. There are no sutures (stitches) to remove. All sutures are absorbable and will dissolve in about 4 weeks. Please call us if you are concerned about the incision.  Some cats will develop a small, hard lump at the incision site.  This is caused by a slight reaction to the stitches or scar tissue.  It will go away in a month or so.

5) Males – Male cats may have swelling, bruising or oozing (may ooze drops of blood).  If your male cat is oozing, put him back in his carrier where he can be quiet for several hours, checking him frequently. It is not uncommon for male cats to ooze, especially larger, mature males. Male cats do not have sutures (stitches).

6) Do not let your cat chew or lick at his/her incision.  If your cat licks or chews at the incision, you MUST get an Elizabethan Collar.

7) Keep cats indoors until the incision heals (1 week).

Vaccines

1) If your cat was vaccinated for rabies for the first time the booster is due in one year.  If your cat had a previous rabies vaccine, the booster is due in 3 years.

2) If your cat was vaccinated with the distemper vaccine for the first time, you should booster the distemper vaccination in one month for adequate protection.

3) For boosters and yearly vaccinations see your full-service veterinarian.

OTHER

If your cat has fleas or ear mites, treat until gone to prevent serious health risks. Ear mites can damage the internal ear causing pain and infection and fleas can cause anemia and other health problems especially in kittens (kittens can die from flea infestations!).  Use only veterinarian approved flea products such as Frontline, Advantage, or Revolution.  If Capstar was given to your cat today, it is not a long-term treatment- you need to apply a monthly one!

** VT-CAN! will gladly recheck your cat’s incision at no charge if you have any concerns.  We will pay for any surgical related emergencies and treatment; however, we cannot pay for outside vet expenses due to failure to follow post-op instructions or issues that are not due to surgery such as a pre-existing, underlying, condition, or pet parent anxiety. If you go to another vet, please take all paperwork from VT-CAN!.

Capstar kills fleas on a cat for 24 hours.  Revolution protects against fleas for one month.  Tapeworms generally come from fleas and need to be treated with special de-wormer with praziquantel in it.

General Cat Care

  • Cats infected with ear mites must be treated because the mites can damage the internal ear causing, pain and infection. Ear mites are infectious so all other pets must be treated.
  • If your cat was treated with Revolution it will kill fleas and ear mites. Re-treat in 1 month if necessary, but not before.
  • To spray your house for flea infestation, use a 210-day residual spray to kill larva and eggs.
  • Feline leukemia is a deadly disease in cats. Currently it is more common than cat distemper. We strongly urge you to test and vaccinate your cat for feline leukemia especially if your cat goes outdoors.
  • Keep your cat indoors at night to prevent contact with wild animals that may have rabies!
  • Have your cat’s teeth cleaned once a year to prevent tooth loss from tartar and infected gums.
  • All collars on cats are dangerous unless they have elastic inserts!!! Strangulation can be caused by collars.
  • Do not feed dog food to cats or use dog products on your cat. Dog food has no taurine which cats must have to survive.
  • Dog flea products often kill cats, over the counter flea medications do not work and are often harmful to pets.
  • Never give your cat Tylenol or aspirin or other human pain killers or anti-inflammatory drugs! Over-the-counter medication can kill cats. Use only vet-prescribed medication.
  • Pets love the taste of antifreeze but it will kill them! Clean up all spills thoroughly and immediately.