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Doc Truli’s Top 10 Requirements for Pet Anesthesia

October 17, 2009

Anesthesia for Pets is Customized and Tricky, Especially for Tiny Pets

Make sure your animal hospital has and does the following before you agree to an anesthetic procedure:

1. oxygen, endotracheal tubes, gas anesthesia (most states mandate these, yet some places, especially low cost places, may not have these basics)

2. licensed veterinarian in the room with your pet (“direct supervision”)

3. intravenous access and fluids used for every procedure lasting more than 10 minutes (in my hospital, it is every procedure)

4. anesthetist for every patient. This is a person, not the veterinarian performing surgery, or their nurse, if they are scrubbed in, monitoring your pet under anesthesia

5. clean and sterile equipment for your pet, including surgical pack, sutures, and drape material

6. monitoring of blood pressure (you’d be surprised…if it takes a nurse more than 2 minutes to find the equipment, they do not use it regularly)

7. doctor performs a physical examination of each pet before surgery

8. external heat source for your pet. Heating pad, Bair Hugger, hot circulating water blanket, hot water bottles (especially for tiny, young, or thin pets)

9. separate surgery room, not a through-passage, never doubling as a kennel or overflow room, clean and neat (also usually mandated by law, you’d be surprised here, too)

***10. Staff and a veterinarian who demonstrate caring and concern for your pet

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