Neutering, Laser vs. Scalpel??

We just got back from the vet for Charlie's last puppy shot. The vet mentioned that they do laser surgery for neutering. It sounds much better than the scalpel, less pain, less bleeding, less swelling, etc. Plus, he won't have to spend the night. Does anyone have opinions/recommendations? I can't imagine anything negative about laser vs. scalpel but just wanted to throw the question out to the experts!

Rick & Charlie
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This is new to me. I'll be interested in hearing more about it.
If you have a choice I guess I'd go with the laser surgery for the reasons you mentioned although none of my own girls have actually been spayed that way. I did fund a rescue once that was spayed using the laser method and she did well. I was given a choice and selected the laser method because she was in heat... there is more bleeding if a spay is done then and I wanted her to have the best chance to be okay.

Hmmm... we've had 7 of our own dogs and 2 stray cats spayed over the past 13 years which is more complicated than a neuter for the little boys... none were ever kept overnight. We took them in by 8 in the morning (remember- no food after the specified time the night before!) and picked them up by 2 or 3 in the afternoon. Maybe your vet is just more cautious.
My vet kept Barney overnight...that was the plan from the beginning...
After I read what I said 8O I thought I should add...

The rescue's surgery was done in Missouri... my own vets in Michigan don't offer laser surgery or we would have opted for it.
I'd totally recommend laser surgery over the traditional one. Who wouldn't want their dog to be in less pain and it be a less invasive procedure as a whole. :)

The only reason why I wouldn't do it... would be because it's usually a LOT more expensive.
barney1 wrote:
My vet kept Barney overnight...that was the plan from the beginning...

You do get to miss any pukiness they may have if they stay overnight with the vet and the vet can monitor them throughout the night. Mine slept a lot that same day after surgery and I always slept with them that night to be certain they were okay. The next morning though ours were always back to their same rambunctious selves and acted like nothing happened! :roll: That always amazes me. If it was one of us, we'd be moaning, groaning and feeling sorry for ourselves and letting everyone around us know about it :lol:
Sounds like laser is the best way to go, thanks everyone! I just thought I would see if anyone had any negative experiences with it. As for the cost, the vet says it's only $40 more than traditional! I would happily spend an extra $40 bucks to keep Charlie out of more pain and swelling. He said that all the dogs he's done leave just as happy as when they came in, AND we don't have to skip a week of puppy school!
Maybe I'm a good doggie momma, but none of my dogs have ever stayed overnight at the vet's after spay/neutering. I can't remember the first guys.....back in the dark ages, but for the last 25 years it's been "home at 6 p.m. keep them quiet."
SheepieBoss wrote:
Maybe I'm a good doggie momma, but none of my dogs have ever stayed overnight at the vet's after spay/neutering. I can't remember the first guys.....back in the dark ages, but for the last 25 years it's been "home at 6 p.m. keep them quiet."

Does that mean I'm a BAD doggie mama? :?
I was actually happy to miss the pukey part (if there was a pukey part). Maybe THAT"S what makes me a bad doggie mama :cry:
Oh pa-leeze! :lol:
You are a great sheepie-mama! :D

Some vets just do things differently... all I was saying is that the girlie surgery is actually abdominal surgery and more involved than the little boy surgery. We never did have one stay overnight and I was surprised they do this. Just think... you did get to miss the pukie, sleepin'-on-your-feet part too.

Please don't take offense... none was intended. :wink:
Phew. Okay, now I feel validated! :D
I was actually referring to Sheepieboss' post that said she was a good sheepie momma because her babies had never stayed overnight...

I'm sure if I suggested to the vet that we'd rather have him at home he would have said yes, but I was fine with picking him up the next day.
Dancer's mother was spayed using laser last year and it went very well, she seemed fine and recovered very quickly.
no, you are a great sheepie-momma. Vets are different. I think we had so many spay/neuters over the years, the vets knew we were capable of noticing problems, isolating dogs, no food, etc. Also we are/were rural and the vet's didn't have the fancy facilities they now have.


oh..laser sounds neat, but it'll probably be another 50 years before that technology comes to Mississippi - at least my area! lol
I think they used the laser on my DH- very easy recovery, just needed frozen peas for a day or two :wink:
I'm impressed with the price! When I was working at a vet clinic (in TX), it was always $100-200 more than the traditional way. What a deal!!!
I just returned with our dog ..used laser . She seems to be alot more comfortable compare to our dogs in the past that had traditional surgury .
I would recommend this laser surgury anytime it is recommended by the vet . Cost ..$40.00 extra . It is so worth it ,for the comfort of your dog ,the recovery time , it has all the extra benifits for your pet .
Also had a cat that needed a cyst removed from her leg . Vet recommended laser for this and she done great . That is why I decided to use it for my dog .
Anyway , short of repeating myself ... This is the best way to go I believe . If you can afford the extra little bit of money it cost ..why not !
Just had our puppy neutered the old fashion way...He went in on Wednesday and came home that night. Was alittle sleepy and walked funny but now its Friday and he's back to his crazy self!

But, is nice to see him with all the energy but having to keep him "calm" is now a problem. I guess if he had the lazer there would be no problem worrying about opening the sutures...I would go for the lazer if available.
Instead of laser, our vet uses radio waves. It is supposed to be easier on the tissue, as it doesn't burn here it cuts.

We have the option of traditional scalpel or the new way. The radio surgery unit rotates around the 3 clinic sites, so you have to wait for the unit if you want it!
old post but any new info on this. To be fixed here in my town the old way and just over $300.00. 2 hours away under $200.00 To laser out of town around $300.00 But we have to leave town at 6:00 am and spend the day there waiting to pick up Blue. Laser is tempting and If I wait a little longer when he around 9-10 months hopefully better weather? What to do???
Update - our vet practice that uses the radiowave (cooler cut than laser, less tissue damage) has had such a wonderful response that they bought radiowave surgery units for all 3 sites. No more sharing. The $30 extra is worth it.
Also, for longer surgeries, the radiowave actually can save you money, as well as a more comfortable recovery for your dog. The radiowave cauterizes as it cuts, eliminating the need to go back and get all the bleeders stopped. This makes for a shorter surgery, so costs less. Also, anything that makes a shorter surgery with less time under anesthesia is a good thing. :D
To me the radio waves sounds like the way to go. Especially if it's easier on the animal. Obe had laser done early in the a.m. and they kept him all day. I picked him up late that afternoon and they said he was doing fine. His recovery seemed to be quick and easy. If the new radio waves were not available then I would definitely recommend doing the surgery with laser.
I am just now seeing this post for the first time, but our dog Nanny was actually spayed today, and we opted for the laser. They also charged $40 extra for it, like some others said above. Of course, my husband opted for all of the options.... so we really ended up paying and additional $140 above the cost of the surgery. (Laser, blood work to make sure her organs could handle the anesthesia, and fluids given during surgery, intraveneously I'm guessing). :P

It's always hard to know what options will really make a difference in their comfort and healing time, and which ones are unnecessary. Better safe than sorry I suppose.
Boy is my timing really bad. I just found this site and hearing about laser surgery for the first time and my Cavalier is scheduled for neutering in the morning! Vet office is closed so I can't ask any questions tonight. Funny thing my husband played golf with a guy today that just had his dog neutered with the laser and was saying how great he did. This is not our first "rodeo", we've had 2 males and 1 female neutered and spayed in the past - many years ago - so I'm embarrassed I hadn't researched and kept more aware of what was out there. :oops: I'm really upset I would put my little guy through more than is necessary. Since my vet didn't mention the option, I'm assuming he doesn't do it but I'll sure be asking as soon as he's open in the morning.
I think most vets nowadays use laser in general...
(at least where I have worked)
I thik the prices are all combined...
Good Luck to your little guy tomorrow.
I'm very glad I found this site. We just rescued an 18 month Westie (number 4) and taking her to be spayed tomorrow. Learning about the laser surgery is great. We love our babies and if it costs a few extra bucks to reduce pain and discomfort and speed the recovery then it is money well spent. Thanks for all the posts.
I hadn't heard about the radio waves, I was considering laser. There is only one vet in the area that I can find that does laser surgery. How do I find vets who have the radio waves?
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