Dark incision site - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-03-2017, 04:51 PM Thread Starter
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Dark incision site

Hey guys,

First time poster, few months reader, father of a 7.5 month old pup.

I am posting because we had our pooch "Sage" spayed on March 21st (a little after her 6 mo. mark). It was internal "absorbable" stitches that they used on her. We were told to cone her for 7-14 days, and no exercise.

Exactly a week later, she was getting some discharge from the incision site (clear fluid), so we took her back in to the vet that performed the surgery and he issued antibiotics. We used them up just over a week later and the site was looking pretty clean and healthy. About 5 days after that (3 weeks later all in all) we took her for a short walk on a dry day to ensure she didn't get the site wet.

Needless to say, a couple of days later, it started looking a little suspect, and the following day, she refused to lie down due to the discomfort it was causing her, along with clear liquid discharge and a bit of blood. She seemed a bit distressed so we took her to the animal emerg (it was a good Friday and nothing was open here) and paid a small fortune to have them clean up the site, ultrasound to ensure the internal sutures were still intact, swab the bacteria to target with antibiotics and send us on our way with a prescription that ended up being a suitable match anyways to what the bacteria came back as. They scrubbed it pretty good so the site looked quite clean but a little agitated.

She has since finished that round of antibiotics and it's been nearly another two weeks of us waiting around. The site has been dry the whole time (both from environment, as well as discharge), was very scabby at first, but now in many places seems to have healed decently well, but the site is very dark still. In some places, it looks as is the discolouration is due to scabbing, but there is no scab present. Towards the top of the incision (closest her head) the skin feels somewhat hard (almost like a scab) but doesn't really present as a typical scab.

She doesn't seem very bothered by people touching near it (with clean hands, mind you) and seems to be in good spirits.

Anyways, just wondering if anyone has ever seen this before with a spay site? If so, any idea if it will go away? Is it something to be concerned about? Should we still avoid exercise/moisture, etc?

I apologize for the lengthy back story, but since everyone has their own, I figured if it ends up comforting someone else that stumbles upon it concerned about it, all the better. To add a bit of context, we were very good about limiting her exercise and movement, exposure to dirt or unclean surfaces, etc.

We did have to leave her home after about the 5th day because of work, but she was coned the whole time. She's chewed through 2 cones though, popped one of the inflatables, and is now at home with the cover of the inflatable stuffed tightly with blankets and things she's ripped up so she still can't access the site. It's entirely possible that the first cone she got off, she got around to licking the site, so that may be the cause of one of the infections.

Any input appreciated, thanks guys. I'm not overly concerned about it as she seems relatively fine otherwise, but our usual vet is away for a few weeks and we're not comfortable taking her to someone we're not familiar with.

Cheers,

Mike
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-03-2017, 07:37 PM
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I am going to have Inga spayed after her second heat so she can grow and still have some protection for breast cancer . None of my sight hounds were ever spayed. Is this the normal post operative care?
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-03-2017, 07:48 PM
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Also, in my exerience the site looks fine. It is normal to have some scar tissue contract like that as you describe your dog having at the top of the suture line.

I myself have been spayed. It was bad the first couple of days with pain. Of course humans are different.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-03-2017, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Nurse Bishop View Post
I am going to have Inga spayed after her second heat so she can grow and still have some protection for breast cancer . None of my sight hounds were ever spayed. Is this the normal post operative care?
Since op asked if it was normal Im not sure that he was the right person to ask if it's normal or not. As far as I can tell the incision site looks fine. There's no redness, swelling, or abscess that I see. There's usually something there if there's a problem but not always. But if you're concerned it's always better safe than sorry and a follow up with the vet would be a good idea
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-04-2017, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
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Since op asked if it was normal Im not sure that he was the right person to ask if it's normal or not. As far as I can tell the incision site looks fine. There's no redness, swelling, or abscess that I see. There's usually something there if there's a problem but not always. But if you're concerned it's always better safe than sorry and a follow up with the vet would be a good idea
We will probably take her back shortly to check it out, but with our usual vet out of town, my better half is hesitant to see someone else - she is very comfortable with the level of care and compassion that doctor shows to Sage. As it was a different clinic that spayed her, I think she's feeling a little guilty about what happened in the hands of a different doctor.

In my ill-qualified opinion, it wasn't the finest incision, but there was nothing to suggest the infections were the result of anything else other than bad luck (and possibly a reaction to the sutures, which appear to have caused the discharge in the first place).

We'll take her when the vet gets back. I guess until then, we'll just wait. Thanks for the input, if anyone else has seen it before, please feel free to share.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-04-2017, 01:44 PM
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Do folks with freshly spayed bitches usually have to put no chew collars on their dogs?
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-04-2017, 02:58 PM
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Here's what happens and you can scroll down to WHAT TO EXPECT about the discharge. Might have licked and caused infection when it shed it's first collar. It looks good and your plan of bringing her back in if you see more discharge when Vet returns, should be adaquete. GL

Canine Spay FAQ - VeterinaryPartner.com - a VIN company!
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-05-2017, 03:25 PM Thread Starter
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Here's what happens and you can scroll down to WHAT TO EXPECT about the discharge. Might have licked and caused infection when it shed it's first collar. It looks good and your plan of bringing her back in if you see more discharge when Vet returns, should be adaquete. GL
Thanks a lot Pivot!

I think it was more so the color than anything that had us a bit perplexed. Most of the incision sites I've seen have a very slight discoloration (if any) visible this long after so it seemed weird to me that it was so dark but we keep her under strict supervision right now checking a 2-3 times a day. Thanks for the confirm!

Mike
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-05-2017, 07:28 PM
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My dog had surgery and the incision healed up nicely. It was not a spay. Three weeks later, I noticed the skin on either side of the scar was dark. The fur grew over it and now I can't even find it, except for as small raised area where they removed the stitches. Some discoloration is common.
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