Just like us, our pets can need surgical intervention to help them with their health. Sometimes these surgeries involve the soft tissues of your pet’s body. Soft tissue surgery is generally used to describe surgery on the skin, muscle, or soft tissues inside the body while. In contrast, orthopedic surgery is used to describe surgery on the bones, joint, and connective tissues such as the tendons and ligaments.
Being told that your pet needs to undergo surgery can be scary but provided you choose a vet who has a great reputation for their skill and experience, there shouldn’t be anything to worry about. Your veterinarian will explain the reason for your pet’s surgery, what will happen and what you can expect afterward, as well as giving you the advice to follow to make sure that your pet makes a swift recovery with minimal risk of complications.
Here are some of the most common reasons why your pet may need soft tissue surgeries.
The most common reason for pets to undergo soft tissue surgery is to remove a lump or growth. This is often referred to as a lumpectomy and can be used to remove both benign and malignant lumps inside and outside of the body. In many instances, a small biopsy of the lump will be taken first. This will be assessed under a microscope to determine the type of mass that it is, which is necessary to know what treatment is needed. If the lump is benign, treatment usually involves the removal and simple aftercare. However, if the mass is diagnosed as being malignant, further treatment in the form of chemotherapy, radiotherapy or further surgery may be necessary.
Spaying, which is the removal of the reproductive organs in female animals, is classed as a soft tissue surgery, and more specifically, an abdominal surgery. Spaying is an elective procedure, but it has very real health benefits for females, such as the elimination of ovarian and uterine cancer, hugely reduced risk of mammary/breast cancer and the prevention of going into heat and messy bleeding. However, spaying isn’t the only abdominal surgery. If your pet develops a mass or tumor within their abdomen or requires the removal of a non-essential organ such as the spleen, this too is a soft tissue surgery.
Unfortunately, many animals occasionally choose to eat and swallow something that causes problems within their digestive system. This could be a non-food item, such as a small toy or object, or it could be part of a food item that isn’t designed for consumption, like a chicken bone. This item could become stuck in their digestive, causing a blockage that could potentially be life-threatening. Some of the things that vets have removed from the digestive system of animals include socks, pinecones, toys like Lego, string, stones, and bones. Similarly, other issues can occur within the digestive system that causes your pet to require surgery on the esophagus, stomach, intestines, or bowels.
Excretion is a normal and important body function for pets too. Nevertheless, some animals experience problems with their urinary system that can only be resolved through surgery, such as bladder stones which aren’t resolved through medication.
Here are many breeds of dogs with flat faces, including pugs and French bulldogs. The trouble is that those animals with flat faces can experience breathing difficulties owing to their narrow nasal passages. In these instances, dogs may be referred for surgery to open the airway and make breathing easier.
If you have any questions about soft tissue surgery, don’t hesitate to speak to our knowledgeable veterinary team.