Frequently Asked Questions

There is no question too big or too small for our veterinary team. Below are some answers to our most common questions.

Lower Columbia FAQs

At Lower Columbia Veterinary Clinic, we get a ton of interesting questions from pet parents. Below are some common FAQs that might help answer any questions or concerns. Please feel free to call us at 360-636-1801 for any other concerns you might have about your pet.
What are your COVID-19 protocols?

Beginning September 29th, 2021, we will be returning to our curbside practices. This decision was not made lightly but we believe it is the best way we can protect our staff and to be able to continue seeing patients during these difficult times. These changes mean that you and your pet(s) will be remaining in your vehicle and calling the clinic when you arrive for your appointment or to pick up medications. This also means that all parts of our building will be closed, including our restroom, to the public.

What are your payment options?

We take cash, credit cards, and Carecredit. Learn more about Carecredit here.

What are your hours?
Mon, Tues, Thur, & Friday: 8am–6pm
Wednesday: 8:30am–1pm & 2pm–6pm
Sat & Sun: Closed
Are you open on the weekends?
We are closed on Saturday and Sunday.
What type of pets do you see?
We proudly treat cats and dogs

Post-Anesthesia FAQs

What should I do when my pet arrives home after their operation?

After arriving home, you should keep your pet warm and comfortable by providing a soft clean bed, ideally in a quiet and draft-free room. Unless otherwise instructed, offer small amounts of fresh water and a small amount of food after leaving the hospital. Please keep your pet indoors overnight or longer if instructed. You should discourage jumping or any activity that will cause excessive stretching of the wound, especially during the first few days after surgery.

My pet seems very sleepy, is this normal?
Yes, a general anesthetic was given to your pet. These drugs can take up to 24- 48 hours to wear off and may cause some pets to appear drowsy. Over the next day, their behavior should return to normal. However, if you are concerned at all, do not hesitate to contact us.
Why has my pet’s foreleg been shaved?
This is where the IV Catheter was placed, and the anesthetic was administered. There may also be a small dressing on the leg; if so, this can be removed the following day unless otherwise instructed. A small area under the tail may also be shaved. This area is commonly used to place the monitor for measuring blood oxygen levels.
My pet has developed a slight cough since the operation. Is this anything to worry about?
No, an endotracheal tube was placed in your pet’s trachea (windpipe) during anesthesia, and this can occasionally cause mild irritation and a slight cough. If so, the cough will diminish over the next few days. However, if it should persist, please contact us.
What should the wound look like, and when should I be concerned?
The wound should normally be clean with the edges together and the skin a normal or slightly reddish/pink color. In pale-skinned pets, bruising may be seen around the wound. This may not appear until a few days after the operation and, in some cases, can seem excessive in comparison to the size of the incision. However, this is due to seepage of blood under the skin edges and is normal. In some cases, a small amount of blood may seep intermittently from a fresh wound for up to 24 hours, especially if the animal is active.
Lickers, Chewers, and Chewed-out Stitches…
Occasionally, pets will lick and chew at their incision site to excess. Since little tongues and teeth can do a lot of damage in just a short time, licking must be prevented. If your pet licks and/or chews at their incision site, it will be necessary to fit them with an Elizabethan Collar until the wound is healed. These are available from us at a nominal extra cost. Despite our best efforts, occasionally, pets manage to open their surgical wounds and get them infected. The client is responsible for any and all costs associated with any complications of surgery that are beyond our control.
When do the stitches need to be removed?

In general, most surgical cases (spays and neuters) have intradermal sutures and do not need to be removed. Sometimes sutures or staples are removed 10-14 days after the operation, depending on the type of surgery performed. You will be instructed regarding the most appropriate time for sutures to be removed.

My pet has bruising after his neuter procedure. Is that normal?
Occasionally dogs will experience more or less extensive bruising in the scrotal area after neutering. This is thought to occur as a result of the “seeping” of severed microscopic blood vessels under the skin. This occurrence is more common in light-colored pets, middle-aged and older pets, and large breed dogs. Please contact the hospital at once if you feel may have excessive bruising. Despite its frightening appearance, the condition is apparently not very painful and generally resolves in about one week without treatment. Sometimes antibiotics will be prescribed to prevent chances of infection.
They forgot to neuter my pet!
Normal post-operative swelling typically makes the scrotum appear full, perhaps even normal size, for about 24-48 hours after surgery. This is normal and does not indicate that your pet was “forgotten”. This swelling typically subsides in due course and the scrotum begins to appear less full. In time the scrotum will contract (shrink up) and become less noticeable.

  • Male hormones can last several weeks.
  • Males can store viable sperm for up to several days to several weeks
My pet is still acting like she’s in heat after her spay procedure!
If your pet was in heat at the time of her spay, blood-tinged urine can be expected for 3-7 days after surgery. This is normal and should not be a cause for alarm as long as it resolves in a timely manner.