Cat Surgery

Any time a veterinarian recommends surgery for a pet it can be a scary situation, especially for smaller animals like cats. There may come a time that you too have a veterinarian recommend a surgical procedure for your feline and knowing that they are in good hands is critical for a less stressful experience and a positive outcome. At Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital, we only recommend surgery whenever necessary and you can rest assured that we have your pet’s best interests in mind. If a cat surgery procedure is needed, we want to make sure that you understand why we have come to that decision and the steps that will be required for the process. 

Typically, there will be two distinct categories of surgery that may be provided to cats. Following the same protocols as human surgeries, these can be defined as either elective or emergency procedures that will require immediate medical attention to avoid fatal results. Regardless of the category your pet’s surgery falls into, the team at Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital is committed to ensuring that you have the information needed to make an informed decision about the care of your pet. Deciding to invest in surgery can be a huge decision and we want to ensure our clients have the resources and information needed to make an informed decision. 

Professional performing surgery on cat

If your cat requires a surgical procedure, our team will want to know more about your pet. Before the process begins, we also want to ensure that any questions or concerns you may have about the procedure are addressed. Before surgery can be approved for your cat, a full examination will be provided to pinpoint any issues that may be present to ensure there are no extreme risks that may impact the safety of your animal or create complications during the surgical procedure. At Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital, we are committed to the highest standards of veterinary medicine possible to ensure your cat remains safe and comfortable when surgery is needed. This commitment makes us the perfect partner for any elective or emergency surgery your cat may need. 

Elective Surgery for Cats

Most elective surgeries won’t have time restraints and the pet owner can take the time to decide when they would like the procedure to be completed; however, there are some circumstances in which delaying an elective surgery could negatively impact your pet. Most elective surgeries will not be associated with a more serious illness and may include spaying, neutering or dental extractions that may be hindering the cat’s ability to eat without pain. If a more serious underlying condition is causing the problem, it may require more urgent attention. 

Because elective surgery is typically minor, your cat will likely be able to return home with you the same day unless an unforeseen problem warrants continued monitoring overnight. Pet owners need to understand that just because surgeries are elective, that doesn’t mean there aren’t potential risks associated with the process depending on the pain tolerance and age of your pet. Our team will try to ensure that they are comfortable and safe throughout their procedure; no matter how complex or minor the procedure may be.

Surgeon Operating in the Hospital a little cat
Vetiranary cat surgery

Emergency Surgery for Cats

Many times, emergency surgery leaves little time for a pet owner to think about whether or not they want to invest in the procedure. Often these problems will occur when pain is hindering the ability of the cat to live a normal life or eat properly. If any potential problems are observed with your cat, it is important to bring them to a veterinarian as soon as possible to ensure the potential problem doesn’t progress. While your cat may be a picky eater, a more serious problem could be keeping them from being able to live a healthy and happy life and this is the sign they are giving to you for help. 

Common reasons for emergency surgery include life-threatening issues like trauma, internal bleeding, intestinal obstruction, urethral blockages, ACL ruptures, skin cancers or bone fractures. While there are many other reasons that emergency surgery may be needed for a cat, potential signals of trouble should be reported to your veterinarian immediately. Early detection is often critical for ensuring the best outcome possible for your pet when surgery may be needed. 

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What Should You Expect if Surgery is Needed?

Whenever possible, pet owners should ensure that their cat has no food after midnight before a scheduled surgery; however, allowing the cat to drink water will generally be fine. Once a cat arrives for a procedure, we will complete any required blood work. Pre-operative blood work allows us to determine if the cat's kidneys and liver are functioning properly before inducing anesthesia. Then we will administer a light sedative and place an IV catheter. Once these surgery prep steps have been completed and the cat has been cleaned, they will be transferred to a surgical suite for the procedure to begin. 

Since anesthesia is used for surgical operations, pet owners must understand that there are risks that the unexpected may occur. And, even though the risk may be low, we understand that you are entrusting the care and protection of your cat to us. To further ensure the safety of your pet during a cat surgery, our team will not only complete a pre-surgery exam on vital organs but will also continue to monitor your cat during the procedure. While we don’t anticipate any problems, we want the pet owner to understand that problems may occur while the surgery is in progress or after the surgery is completed. 

Cat checkup
Doctor cat's assessment

Pre-Surgical Instructions

Similar to pre-surgical instructions given to humans before a procedure begins, pet owners must also abide by veterinarian guidelines to ensure the best outcome possible for their cat whenever surgery may be needed. Typically, these instructions will be required for both elective and emergency surgeries, although exceptions can be made for time-sensitive surgery recommendations depending on the severity of the situation. Your veterinarian will provide you with the information needed before the procedure begins and you will be expected to follow these guidelines. 

As previously mentioned, limiting feeding the night before surgery is critical should surgery be needed. While allowing your cat to drink water is generally accepted, you will need to follow the strict guidelines given to you by your veterinarian and cut off water and food at the required time you are given. In many cases, cat surgery is scheduled at precise times to allow for multiple surgeries in a single day. For this reason, pet owners need to arrive on time for their appointment. 

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What Should You Know About Anesthesia?

Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital follows strict anesthesia guidelines both during cat surgeries and after they are completed. When done properly, anesthesia is incredibly safe and won’t carry lasting side effects for your pet. Our veterinarians will take every precaution necessary to ensure your cat remains safe before surgery and anesthesia begin. While there is always some risk associated with surgical procedures, we will do everything we can to ensure the safety of your cat at all times when they are inside of our facilities. 

All cats may have different surgery recovery times and, depending on the age of your cat, and the length of surgery that was performed, the amount of anesthesia and effects it causes may vary. While your cat may still be groggy or tired following a surgical procedure, pet owners will need to monitor their cat for potential problems and contact their veterinarian immediately if any issues may arise following the completion of a procedure. 

Prick the kitten in the neck with a syringe
Depressed cat in bandage lying in vet clinic
Depressed cat in bandage lying in vet clinic

Post-Surgical Care for Cats

Much like the pre-surgery protocols that pet owners are given, certain post-surgery steps will also be required, and pet owners need to understand what they are expected to do. While these protocols may vary widely depending on the type of surgery that is performed, the team at Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital is committed to ensuring that pet owners have the knowledge and resources needed to confidently help their cat recover for a procedure, no matter how severe it may have been. For smaller surgical procedures, the cat may be able to go home with the owner after a short recovery period; however, more intensive surgical procedures may require a 24 hour or more holding period to observe the cat. 

Most surgeries will require the use of sutures to close an incision. Pet owners must be vigilant in ensuring that no infection or other potential signs of problems are occurring like redness around the suture site or potential swelling. Furthermore, monitoring the cat to ensure they are pulling at or removing the sutures is equally important. It is important to continue following the recovery program put in place for the cat until notified otherwise by a veterinarian to ensure the best outcome and healing process possible for your pet. 

How Can You Schedule Surgery for Your Cat?

Any pet owner that needs to schedule surgical procedures for their cat can contact the team at Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital. If your pet isn’t a current patient, we will need to get to know both you and your pet to establish the best care plan possible for their needs both before surgery begins and after the procedure is completed. Our veterinarian team is highly experienced and will care for your cat like it was our own pet to not only ease the stress and fear associated with surgery but ensure that your pet receives the highest quality care.

Why Choose Advanced Care for Cat Surgery?

Advanced Care is more than just a primary care hospital. Our patients and clients are special to us and are the reason why we always treat everyone who comes to visit as another member of our family each and every time they walk in our doors. We do not treat every patient the same because we understand that each one requires individualized care and attention.

Advanced Care Veterinary Hospital Hallway

Meet Our Doctors

Jennifer Patton


Dr. Patton’s decision to pursue veterinary medicine came after she realized that while education and teaching is her passion, it is not something she could do as a career. Veterinary medicine allowed her to combine her love of animals with her love of teaching.

After she graduated from Oklahoma State University with her Doctorate, she practiced in several high volume hospitals in the Tulsa area, developing medical skills with varied case loads and growing her leadership skills.


Allissa Huckabay


Dr. Huckabay’s love of science and animals naturally led her to a lifelong passion of veterinary medicine. She worked and volunteered at a local veterinary hospital before she furthered her education at Oklahoma State University, graduating in 2016 with her Doctorate.

Dr Huckabay immediately found her home at ACVH, where she is able to create a healthy bond with each of her patients as she experiences all stages of their care with their owners.


Phillip Adolph

Phillip Adolph, DVM is a graduate of Oklahoma State University Veterinary Health Sciences. He also attended OSU for his undergraduate studies where he graduated with a Bachelors of Arts and Sciences in Agriculture through the College of Animal Sciences. Dr. Adolph was on the President’s Honor Roll and was a member of the OSU jazz orchestra. He joined the Advanced Care team immediately upon his graduation in 2019 after doing 6 weeks of externships during his 4th year of veterinary school.