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Spaying Young Female

Guest sarahbella1063

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Guest sarahbella1063

Hey Guys


I am a first time greyhound parent and we're about to have our 19 month old female spayed - I cannot tell you how nervous I am :(


Our little miss is still a little anxious and nervous in certain situations so I know this will be difficult process for her.


I've been doing bits of reading and there have been the standard pieces of information floating around. However I was hoping for some information on what to expect with a greyhound (as I know they are super big sooks) and any tips/tricks you may have from when you've had your girls spayed.


So many thanks in advance xx

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Really nothing any different. Just make sure your vet knows about greyhound anesthesia protocols - and since you're from Australia, I'm not sure what your vets do and don't know. Hopefully one of our Aussie GTers will see this and respond! You can also search the forum for other threads about anesthesia to find it written out.


She may be a bit wonky and slow to come out of the sedation. I usually just let them be until they are able to stand and walk about on their own, then worry about pottying and eating a small bite so she can take her meds. OR she may have a bad reaction to the anesthesia and you will have a very anxious night on your hands. If she is pacing and panting and seems unable to calm herself or lay down and rest, she having a bad reaction - most likely to any opiates that were used. There's no way to reverse this and you just have to wait it out until it clears her system.. OR she may be absolutely fine. These are just some things to watch out for.


As far as afterwards, she'll be on exercise restrictions for a couple weeks. If she recovers typically, that will be about two weeks too long to suit *her* and you'll begin having trouble keeping her quiet! A muzzle can be useful if she wants to lick or get after her stitches, and a crate (if she's comfortable and familiar with it) can help keep her less active and contained when you're gone. They are very agile, and those big plastic cones won't stay on their heads, so you'll ned to be creative if that becomes an issue.

Chris - Mom to: Felicity (DeLand), and Andi (Braska Pandora)

52592535884_69debcd9b4.jpgsiggy by Chris Harper, on Flickr

Angels: Libby (Everlast), Dorie (Dog Gone Holly), Dude (TNJ VooDoo), Copper (Kid's Copper), Cash (GSI Payncash), Toni (LPH Cry Baby), Whiskey (KT's Phys Ed), Atom, Lilly

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When I first started a chapter of a greyhound rescue I sent letters to every vet in town asking to meet them and discuss if they would be willing to work with the group at reduced rates on spay/neuter as we were a registered non profit. I met with the vets and went over my list of questions. When I asked about anesthesia protocol I received a few barely restrained eye rolls. One of the large/small animal practitioners who was basically a country vet in a dusty West Texas town finally said what the others were probably thinking - "no disrespect Ma'am, but if there's a vet alive that doesn't know sighthound anesthesia protocols they've been under a rock for at least a decade"...and that was 15 years ago. Never hurts to ask though.

She may surprise you. As greysmom said pretty much just let her be and she should be fine. One thing people often lose sight of is that they are dogs. Wonderful dogs with a few physical quirks (and it seems sometimes a few psychological ones as well :)), but still dogs. Relax, you'll be fine.

Edited by Hubcitypam
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Ditto what the others said.


But I want to :welcome2 you to the Greyt Greyhound Cult, and to Greytalk. Many years ago I was co-monitor of an Aussie based bulletin board, but with the advent of My Space then Facebook, it lost it's members and no longer exists. But you've got a lot of greyt Aussie people with greyhounds down under.


I visited your country in 2002 for a month. Loved it. I can't wait to go back.


And good luck with her spay. What's her name?

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"no disrespect Ma'am, but if there's a vet alive that doesn't know sighthound anesthesia protocols they've been under a rock for at least a decade"...and that was 15 years ago.


I think this is true with respect to not using thiopental in greyhounds. Every vet graduates knowing that and that is completely necessary, because you can easily kill a greyhound with it, however, to me there's a difference between just keeping your patient alive, and actually having a really good anesthetic. When Kili had surgery the first time it was out of my hands as it happened at a referral centre; I was never worried that they were going to kill her with an inappropriate anesthetic protocol, but what I WAS worried about (and what DID happen) is that she came out of the anesthetic really poorly... in what I'm sure is considered "typical greyhound fashion". I mean screaming, wailing, thrashing on immediate recovery (for so long that I finally couldn't take it any more and asked to go back to try to help as I was concerned she was going to hurt herself), followed by pathetic, inconsolable whimpering on the hour long drive home. She was normal by the morning except for being a little bit painful. The only thing I can think is all the opiates she had been given - first for premedication and then afterwards because they kept insisting she was painful when really she was dysphoric (tripping out seeing dragons!).


Second time around when I decided to spay Kili I had it done at my own clinic. I asked my boss to spay her for me so that I could handle her anesthetic. I used essentially zero opiates, and relied heavily on less common techniques for pain control (for anyone that is curious I did a constant rate infusion of ketamine, lidocaine, and dexdomitor). Pain control is super important during surgery (not just after) because it helps keep the level of anesthetic low, and it's also important to have good pain control during surgery because it prevents them from feeling pain as they're waking up (which smooths recovery). I am not an anesthesiologist and I do not pretend to know more in general than an anesthesiologist, however, I do know what I've experienced with my own dogs and foster dogs. Now, I've been told by several anesthesiologists that opiates and acepromazine do not cause problems in greyhounds, so maybe they don't.... But what I know is that when not given any opiates her anesthetic was perfect. She woke up slowly, quietly, and safely. I'm not saying I would never give a greyhound an opiate, but it is not part of my routine protocol. If I can avoid it, I do... because my goal isn't only to keep my patient alive, but also to keep them safe and comfortable. I can't accept that "greyhounds just wake up badly". Sure, it happens once in awhile with any type of dog, but it shouldn't be common place. And to me having a greyhound appropriate anesthetic protocol means more than just not using thiopental.


ETA: For the OP, this wasn't meant to terrify you! I just realized this may have been kind of scary to hear. The reality of anesthetic is that sometimes things go absolutely smoothly, and sometimes despite best efforts they wake up a little rough. The only point I was trying to make is that when discussing "greyhound saavy" anesthetics I strongly believe it comes down to more than just not using drugs that are dangerous for greyhounds. And I'm not saying that they shouldn't ever have opiates... just that it's really important to think things through and consider what is happening and what the problem might be, and to adjust accordingly. I was SO nervous during Kili's entire anesthetic, because I'd seen her wake up rough once already and I wanted to do everything in my power to not have it happen again. I came up with what I thought was the best possible plan for her, but I didn't know if it would work out that way or not until after the fact. It's just important to tailor things to the individual as much as you can.

Edited by krissy

Kristie and the Apex Agility Greyhounds: Kili (ATChC AgMCh Lakilanni Where Eagles Fly RN IP MSCDC MTRDC ExS Bronze ExJ Bronze ) and Kenna (Lakilanni Kiss The Sky RN MADC MJDC AGDC AGEx AGExJ). Waiting at the Bridge: Retired racer Summit (Bbf Dropout) May 5, 2005-Jan 30, 2019

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