Surgical FAQ


Many pet owners don’t understand that there can be great differences in the quality of care when it comes to surgical procedures and dental procedures. Those differences are often reflected in price. Some veterinary clinics will take shortcuts in order to reduce price, but these shortcuts also greatly reduce the level of care and comfort that your pet is receiving.

What does this mean? This means that routine spay and neuter surgeries, including dental procedures, and their prices, can vary greatly from hospital to hospital. If you are shopping around trying to find the right price on a procedure, please make sure you are comparing apples to apples. Many times, if the price of a procedure is substantially lower than another, the level of care your pet will receive will also be lower. There are many reasons to choose Heritage Pet Hospital over a less expensive clinic. The following is a list of supplies, techniques, and procedures which Heritage Pet Hospital utilizes to provide safe and comfortable surgeries and procedures for all of our patients.


Pre-Anesthetic Blood Testing
We have an extensive in-house lab that will test your pet’s blood prior to being anesthetized on the morning of surgery. These tests check for liver and kidney function and for any other abnormalities telling us whether or not there could be a potential problem with surgery or anesthesia. In order to offer you the peace of mind you deserve, we REQUIRE that every pet have pre-anesthetic blood work done within one year of their anesthetic procedure.


Pre-Anesthetic Exam
Many things can change up to the day of surgery. Each patient will receive an exam on the day of the procedure including temperature, pulse and respiration. This ensures that your pet’s body is ready for anesthesia on the day of the event.


IV Catheter
An intravenous catheter allows us to give injections and IV fluids into a vein. It is a vital life line if any complications might occur. Precious minutes can be lost trying to place an IV catheter AFTER a problem occurs.


IV Fluids
IV fluids support circulation and blood pressure during anesthetic procedures.


Pre-Anesthetic Pain Medications
Pain medications used early on in a procedure allows us to use lower doses of anesthetics. This also helps with a smoother induction and recovery and relaxes the patient prior to anesthesia. This also treats pain BEFORE it occurs, which is vital to the patients comfort.


Multi-Modal Anesthesia
Heritage Pet Hospital uses the best method for inducing anesthesia in your pet. We first sedate with an injectable anesthetic, and then we switch to a human grade gas anesthetic until they reach a surgical plane of anesthesia.


Oxygen Supplied by Intubation
Intubation is placing a tube in the airway to prevent closure of the airway during surgery. Oxygen and gas anesthesia are given this way.


Completely Sterile Technique for Each Case
Heritage Pet Hospital NEVER reuses gloves, instruments or any other material associated with your pet’s surgery or procedure. We use aseptic technique in each and every case; keeping your pet’s instruments and environment as sanitary as possible.


Heated Surgery Table
Maintaining body temperature helps a patient feel more comfortable and supports normal metabolism during anesthesia. Your pet’s body temperature is also continually monitored during the procedure.


Continual Patient Monitoring
We monitor your pet’s temperature, heart rate, respiration, ECG and oxygen levels during surgery. Monitoring these vital signs lets us know if a problem is occurring early on and we can respond to it appropriately.


Trained, Certified Veterinary Technician Providing Monitoring of Each Patient
Machines cannot replace having a trained person available to monitor the well-being of each patient. Your pet is continually monitored throughout the procedure by their own technician.


Post-Operative Heating Pad and Blankets
Providing heat postoperatively is important for patient comfort and recovery, but it must be done safely. A normal heating pad is dangerous. We have invested in special heating pads and towel warmers for the safety and comfort of our patients.


Postoperative Hands on monitoring during recovery
Postoperative care to make sure our patients recover well and to provide for their comfort.


Postoperative Pain Medication
Omitting pain medication is not an option at Heritage Pet Hospital. We have seen over the years how much better pets recover and heal with pain medication and we will not deny any patient this important part of their recovery.


Follow-Up Pain Medication
We will dispense pain medication in many cases to help your pet heal well. Experience and experimental evidence on people and pets overwhelmingly point to how important this is.


Note: There is always risk with every anesthetic procedure. However, the staff at Heritage Pet Hospital takes every precaution possible to ensure that your pet is safe and comfortable throughout the whole procedure. Because unforeseen events can occur, we want to detect problems early on in order to take appropriate action.

We encourage potential clients to not just compare price, but to also ask questions about what kind of care will be offered for their pets.