Information for Clients 

The Small Animal Surgery Service at LSU accepts new clients only by referral from your family veterinarian. We depend on your veterinarian to determine when a referral is needed, and then work with him or her to provide the most optimal care for your pet.

Once the referral has been made, you may contact our office to schedule an appointment. We can be reached by calling (225) 578-9600. We see appointments on Monday afternoons and Wednesday mornings. Scheduled surgeries are performed on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

Urgent referrals and emergencies are seen throughout the day by special arrangement. The hospital is open 24 hours a day seven days a week for general emergencies. Please phone (225) 578-9600.

A team consisting of ACVS-boarded veterinary surgeons, House Officers (interns and residents), and veterinary student will care for your pet. Your surgery team may consult with other services (e.g., anesthesia, radiology, internal medicine, soft tissue surgery, oncology, cardiology, ophthalmology, dermatology, clinical pathology, microbiology) if the expertise of those disciplines would be beneficial for your pet.

The Veterinary Teaching Hospital now offers hyperbaric oxygen therapy to heal wounds, decrease nervous system injury, minimize inflammation, and treat infections.

What should I bring to the consultation?

If possible, any information regarding previous radiographs, lab test results, and medical history should be brought to the initial consultation. Also bring any medication that your pet is taking. We will use this information in combination with a thorough examination of your pet in order to make our initial evaluation.

What should I expect during the consultation?

A senior veterinary student will obtain the initial medical history. The student will then have you return to the waiting room while your pet is taken into the hospital and examined by the surgical team. Once your pet has been examined, the student and at least one clinician will meet with you to discuss the options for diagnosis and treatment. If further diagnostic or surgical procedures are recommended and you wish to proceed, you will be given an estimate of the costs and the length of hospital stay.

In general, simple radiographs can be performed within a few hours on an outpatient basis. The pet is usually sedated to allow for more accurate radiographic positioning, and will decrease potential anxiety or discomfort. In order to safely sedate your pet, it should not eat after 10:00 p.m. the night prior to the appointment, but drinking water is okay. If your pet is sick or very young (less than 3 months old) please check with our service prior to the appointment as to whether fasting is recommended.

Will my pet be hospitalized?

If your pet’s problem requires more extensive diagnostic procedures or surgery, it will normally be admitted as an inpatient for these procedures. Surgery is not usually performed on the same day as the appointment, unless it is an emergency. Animals that are medically unstable or painful will be admitted to the intensive care unit, where they will receive 24-hour care by certified veterinary technicians.

While under anesthesia for surgery, your pet is monitored constantly by a veterinary student and anesthesia technician, under the guidance of veterinary anesthetists. After surgery, the surgery student will sit with your pet until it has completely recovered from the anesthesia. Most pets will be kept on some type of pain medication for several days after surgery.

When can my pet come home?

Most pets are monitored in the hospital for at least one night after surgery, possibly more, depending on the intensity of the postoperative care required. During the hospital stay, you will be given daily telephone updates regarding the status of your pet. You may also arrange to visit your pet while it is hospitalized. When your pet is ready to go home we will arrange a time that is as convenient as possible. Weekend or evening discharge times can be arranged.

At the time of discharge, you will be given a written summary of the tests and procedures performed. In addition, the home care and follow-up recommendations will be discussed with you.