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When Can My Dog Play After Being Spayed?

Most dogs can run around and play 10 days after they are spayed. Remember to avoid any activity for the first two days following the procedure. You can start taking your puppy on “sniff walks” on day three, but they should not run and play until day 10.

Most dogs love to play and run around, but we should be careful of letting our dogs play shortly after getting spayed. We know it may be challenging to keep your playful dog still and in recovery mode, but we’re here to offer some advice on how to speed up the healing process to get your dog back to safely running around.

10 Days is the Magic Number

The average dog will be ready to return to its normal activity level 10 days after being spayed. However, some dogs may require a few more days of recovery. If your dog is 10 days post-op but still doesn’t want to run around and play, don’t force it. The dog may still need a few more days of recovery.

No Activity For 1-2 Days After Being Spayed

Although most dogs will be able to run around and play again 10 days after being spayed, it’s critical that you don’t allow any activity 24 to 48 hours after the procedure. Even something as simple as stretching can cause the stitches to tear.

Activities That Are Safe After 2-3 Days

After two or three days following a procedure, your dog is most likely getting pretty antsy and is ready to get back to its regular routine. Despite this, they should still move slowly and only do light activities.

Below are a few suggestions for safe activities after spaying.

Mental Stimulation

Anything that stimulates the mind can be a great alternative to intense physical activity. Games and puzzles are good examples.

A few other ways to mentally stimulate your dog include:

  • Hiding snacks in a sniff mat or Kong toy
  • Sniffing around your backyard or park
  • Learning a new trick
  • Allowing them to interact with anything new

Mental stimulation activities are a great way to keep your dog busy and “active.” They will even tire them out, similar to physical activity.

If you find that your dog loves these activities, don’t stop doing them once they recover. These activities are great to include in your dog’s day-to-day and can be equally as important as physical playtime!

If you include mental stimulation as part of your dog’s daily routine, you’ll notice their behavior will significantly improve.

Light walking

A physical activity that you can incorporate 2-3 days following the procedure is light walking. This is light walking, not speed walking! Remember that your dog is trying to recover from an intrusive procedure. Too much movement could cause internal damage and issues with the stitches.

If you decide to take your dog on a light walk, make sure your dog does not take off at a sprint. During this walk, you can also incorporate some mental stimulation by allowing them to sniff around. Dogs explore the world with their nose, and exploring new things is also part of mental stimulation.

If your dog is sniffing the world around them, make sure they aren’t running from place to place. You also want to be mindful of other dogs you may cross paths with. Avoid any sort of roughhousing between the dogs to avoid pulling of the stitches.

How to Speed Up Recovery

Early Confinement

Besides being cautious with physical activity, there are a few ways you can help your dog recover on schedule or maybe even ahead of schedule.

Enclosing or confining your dog as soon as possible is the first step in a speedy recovery. For example, if you have a crate, have your dog spend a majority of the day in there to prevent them from moving around too much.

Confining your dog early on restricts their movements and keeps them from jumping onto couches, beds, or people.

Treating The Scar

Properly treating the scar is another excellent way to speed up recovery. As with any wound, you can expect to see scabs and some blood, but the most important thing to watch for is any debris such as dirt or dust that may stick to the wound. Small bits of debris may contain germs or micro-particles that irritate or infect the area, preventing it from recovering quickly.

Don’t be afraid to clean the area around the scar. Make sure you do not scrub or scratch off any scabs. Those are important for the healing process and cause more blood if removed.

Don’t Leave Your Dog Alone

A final tip for a speedy recovery is to keep a constant eye on your dog for the first few days. Even if you have a naturally lethargic dog, they’ll still want to run around for a few minutes each day. If you leave the house for a few hours, you won’t be able to prevent them from running around or trying to bite the stitches.

Remember, something as simple as stretching could mess with their stitches, negatively affecting recovery. Try to keep your dog in the same room as you the first few days following the procedure.

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