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Information for Fosters

Drop-off Instructions:

Drop off starts at 7:30 AM and ends at 8:00 AM. Please do not feed the dog or cat their breakfast the morning of the surgery, unless they are under 4 months of age. If someone else is dropping off on your behalf, please make sure they have information about:

  • Any medications the pet is currently taking

  • Any medical concerns

  • Time the pet last ate


Please plan on patient pick up between 3:00-5:00 that same afternoon. We ask that all patients are picked up by 5:00pm unless they are staying overnight for heartworm treatment.

If the pet is being dropped off for heartworm treatment, please bring two meals of their regular food and any medications.

Post Operative Discharge Instructions:

We provide written discharge information for all procedures. For specific procedures, please see below.

For your foster to have the best recovery possible, please follow these guidelines. Their recovery is your responsibility!

  • Animals may be groggy on the first night after an anesthetic procedure. You may offer him/her half of their normal dinner tonight and resume a normal feeding schedule tomorrow morning.

Have water readily available.

  • *if patient is a puppy/kitten offer him/her their normal feeding tonight*


  •  Dogs may be taken on short, leashed walks just to go to the bathroom (NO running, rough housing, jumping, off-leash play, etc.) and they should be confined to a crate or small room when you are not home.  It will be beneficial to separate housemates if they tend to actively play.  Minimal activity should be allowed for two weeks post-surgery.

  • Cats should be confined to one room, with minimal activity for two weeks post-surgery.

  • No baths or swimming for two weeks.

INCISION CARE: Most pets will leave the incision alone, but if he/she licks at the incision they must wear an e-collar (these can be purchased from a vet or pet store).

**IF the pet is not confined, or is allowed to lick or chew the incision open, there will be a charge for repair of the incision if needed. **


  • Do not clean the incision or apply any ointments unless directed. Look at the incision at least once a day to monitor for any swelling, redness, or discharge.

  • If your animal was sent home with a pain medication, start this tomorrow morning with a meal as directed on the label.

Contact us at 919-249-6601 during business hours, your rescue coordinator, or VSH at 919-233-4911 after hours if you notice vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, inappetence, or complications with the incision site.

Information for Fosters: About

Specific Discharge instructions

Post Dental

Each pet recovers from anesthesia at a different rate. Some animals are completely back to normal within 24 hours, while others may take a few days to resume normal activity. It is also normal for there to be a small amount of blood tinged saliva for the next 24-48 hours. Please call if you feel this is excessive or if you notice he/she is acting unusual in any way, such as being lethargic, painful, not eating, or having vomiting and/or diarrhea.

Upon returning home, give at least an hour before attempting to offer food or water.  It is not unusual for some pets not to eat the night of anesthesia or not to have a bowel movement for 24-48 hours. 

Since your pet had oral surgery today it is extremely important that you feed soft or moistened food for the next two weeks in order not to cause pain and disruption of the sutures. You can either feed canned food or use warm water to soak your pet’s regular dry kibble into a gruel consistency. Do not allow any chewing or playing with toys during this time. It is also important for you to monitor your pet’s mouth daily for swelling, redness, excessive bleeding, foul odor, pain, dark color around the surgery area, or an open tooth socket or disruption of the gingival tissue. Should any of these or other problems arise, call us as soon as possible.

If your pet was sent home with medication(s), start these the morning after with a meal as directed on the label. 

Contact us at 919-249-6601 during business hours, your rescue coordinator, or VSH at 919-233-4911 after hours if you notice vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, inappetence, or complications once home.

We offer a courtesy recheck two weeks after procedure to ensure appropriate healing.

Heartworm Treatment

Upon discharge, we are prescribing Prednisone and Gabapentin for your dog to reduce side effects. Trazadone may be dispensed as needed to keep your pet calm to aid in restricting activity/excitement.


Final Assessment of Efficacy

Your veterinarian will test your dog’s blood to assess the success of adulticide treatment 6 months after treatment. The goal is to eliminate all stages of heartworms from your dog. 


Home Care – Your Responsibility

Throughout the recovery period, please watch your pet for coughing, gagging, vomiting, diarrhea, or loss of appetite. Excessive sluggishness, respiratory distress, and coughing up blood are signs of a serious problem that require immediate veterinary attention. The most important thing you can do to minimize complications during treatment is to restrict your pet’s exercise before, during and after the Melarsomine injections.

Because exercise increases blood flow to the lungs, it increases the likelihood that dead worms will block blood flow. This can result in severe complications and possibly death.


Restricted activity:

  • Short, leashed walks only just to use the bathroom

  • No running/free roaming

  • No rough housing

  • No jumping

  • They should be confined to a crate or small room when you are not home

  • It will be beneficial to separate housemates if they tend to actively play


The importance of restricting your dog’s activity and continuing heartworm prevention cannot be overemphasized!

Information for Fosters: Services


What should I do prior to dropping  off for surgery?

Please don’t feed your pet after 10pm the evening prior to the appointment and don’t give any food  the morning of surgery. Otherwise, follow your normal morning routine and please arrive between 7:30 and 8:00 am to drop the pet off.

What should I expect for the recovery?

You will receive discharge instructions from us that explain for how long the pet will need to be kept quiet and how long you should refrain from bathing the pet.

Will you see my personal pet?

Unfortunately, we cannot see your personal pet. We can only see pets that are in the care of a rescue group organization that has an affiliation with us.

Can I bring a stray animal to you?

Unfortunately, we are not a rescue organization, only a veterinary hospital for rescue group organizations. We do not house any animals. If you find a stray animal, please use the "our partners" tab on this website and find a rescue organization you'd be interested in working with.

I am looking to foster or adopt. What should I do?

Please contact one of our partners. You can find our partners by going to "our partners" tab on this website.

I am worried about my foster pet’s health. What should I do?

Please call the rescue you received your foster from and ask what they will cover. If it's something dire, please give us a call at 919-249-6601 during our office hours. If it's a medical emergency, please contact the nearest emergency animal hospital to you.

How long should I expect an appointment to be?

Appointment times can vary depending on the type of appointment scheduled. Well-pet appointments are typically around 30 minutes. Sick patients or patients in need of a more in depth assessment will have appointments that run longer

Information for Fosters: FAQ
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