What is Laparoscopic (Keyhole) Spaying?
Laparoscopy (keyhole surgery) is a minimally invasive technique that can be used to spay female dogs. It uses specific video-endoscopic equipment to perform the procedure. Just like the traditional surgery it is performed under general anaesthesia. The procedure involves 2 ports placed into the abdominal cavity, which provides an opening for the equipment. The abdomen is then inflated to enable visualisation with the camera. Using the laparoscope both ovaries are identified and then removed using cauterisation (a method that involves minimal blood loss). The abdomen is then deflated and the 2 small incisions are closed.
What are the advantages of Laparoscopic Spaying?
Laparoscopic spaying is a much less invasive procedure than the traditional midline ‘open’ approach. There is typically a much faster recovery time and post-operative pain is reduced. Most dogs will be able to go back to normal exercise after 4 days of rest, although it is advised not to take your dog swimming for at least 10 days after the procedure. Laparoscopy is already the preferred method for many procedures in human medicine and is fast becoming the gold standard in veterinary medicine.
What happens if something doesn’t go to plan?
In the unlikely event that a piece of the essential equipment fails or where other surgical complications arise then it may be necessary to convert to a standard midline spay.