Spaying or neutering your dog is one of the best decisions you can make as a responsible pet owner. The dogs themselves are the main beneficiaries.

Dogs that undergo one of those aforementioned procedures live longer. Pet dogs that are spayed or neutered live longer because they are less likely to develop certain forms of cancer. They are also less likely to get into fights so that helps keep them safe.

As for the pet owners, not having to deal with unwanted puppies is a pretty good benefit.

Getting your dog spayed or neutered is a good idea. However, the time right after your dog undergoes one of those procedures can be difficult. The cone they have to wear could be causing some issues.

So, how long does the cone need to stay on after your dog is spayed or neutered? Find out the answer to that question by reading the rest of this article.

How Long Do Dogs Have to Wear a Cone after Neuter or Spay?

Dogs need to be protected from themselves after they get spayed or neutered. If you don’t place a cone around your dog’s head post-surgery, their surgical wounds could get more serious.

In male dogs, constant irritation of the area that was operated on can lead to excessive bleeding. All that blood could pool inside your dog’s reproductive organs and the increased pressure could cause a rupture.

For female dogs, there’s a possibility that their wounds could open up if the stitches are tampered with. You can see how that can lead to serious complications.

Leave the cone on your dog until they have recovered completely from their surgical wounds. That’s the best way to provide any accidents.

Generally speaking, the wounds should heal 10 to 14 days following the surgery. Larger dogs tend to need more time to recover from their wounds.

Consult your veterinarian if you aren’t sure if your pet’s cone can be removed. They can take a closer look and give you more guidance on that front.

Why Won’t My Dog Keep His Cone On?

Is your dog messing around with his protective cone too much? You’re not alone. Many pet owners have dealt with dogs that simply want nothing to do with their respective cones.

The reasons detailed below explain why dogs tend to have that kind of reaction.

Your Dog Is Confused by the Cone

Dogs that are wearing the cone for the first time will likely be confused by it. That should come as no surprise.

Although they don’t know what the cone is, they do understand that they don’t like it. They will likely try their best to remove the cone unless you put a stop to them. Hopefully, they will not mind wearing the cone as more time passes.

Your Dog Wants to Scratch Their Wounds

After the surgery, the new wounds on your dog’s body may feel a bit painful. That pain will eventually subside. However, it may be replaced by a different sensation.

Now that the wounds are healing, your dog may feel them growing itchy. When they feel their wounds becoming itchy, they will want to scratch them. You cannot let that happen.

All you can do at this point is hope that the itchiness subsides quickly and that your pet will stop trying to scratch their wounds.

Your Dog Is Having a Hard Time Moving

Don’t immediately ignore your dog that is trying to remove the cone. They may want to remove the cone for a valid reason.

Look at the cone and see how big it is in relation to your pet’s body. There’s a chance that the cone is affecting your dog’s ability to move around.

You can trim the cone or get a new one from the veterinarian so your dog can move better. Just avoid making the cone so small that it will no longer act as a deterrent to your dog.

How to Get My Dog to Keep His Cone On?

The protective cone needs to stay on your dog. Follow the tips here if you want to stop your dog from messing around with their cone.

Train Your Dog

Since you know you’re getting your dog spayed/neutered at some point, you can train them ahead of time so wearing the cone is no big deal. Put the cone on your dog and stay with them until they calm down.

Offer them treats so they understand that good behavior while wearing the cone is rewarded.

You should also take this opportunity to walk your dog around while they’re wearing the cone. Get them used to walking with the cone so they don’t encounter difficulties later on.

Monitor Your Dog

One way to keep the cone on your dog is by keeping a close eye on them. Monitor them to see how they react to the cone. Tell them to stop when they start fiddling with the cone.

Keep Your Dog Comfortable

Although wearing the cone is not causing any kind of pain, they may still find it uncomfortable. By easing their discomfort, you can take their mind off the cone.

Give them a comfy bed and make sure the temperature in the room is just right so they can settle in. Have them lie down next to you as well if that will help them feel more comfortable.

Can I Take the Cone Off My Dog to Sleep?

The cone needs to stay on your dog as much as possible. Even their sleeping time is not an exception to that.

You must not remove the cone at night. If anything, keeping the cone on your dog during that time is even more important. Without the cone, they could mess up their stitches while you are sleeping.

You don’t have to worry about the cone keeping your dog from sleeping. It is flexible enough that they should be able to lie down in their preferred position with no issue.

How Long Does It Take for a Male or Female Dog to Recover from Neutering or Spaying?

Following the surgery, your dog will likely be lethargic. They may not have much of an appetite and they may not move around a lot. That’s probably because the drugs used during the surgery are still affecting them.

Most of the time, dogs will be more energetic the day after the surgery.

If we’re talking about full recovery, that will take more time. Your dog can be considered fully recovered when their wounds are completely healed.

They will likely need 10 to 14 days to fully recover from the surgical procedure. It’s not a coincidence that dogs are considered fully recovered from spaying or neutering at the same time that the cone can be removed.

How Soon Can I Walk My Dog after Neutering?

Dogs need to rest properly so they can recover from spaying or neutering. You shouldn’t be taking them out for long walks when their wounds can still open up.

Once again, you need to wait for 10 to 14 days before resuming your dog’s walking routine. Accompanying them out to your yard so they can expel waste is fine and light walking is acceptable too. You should just stop them from exerting too much energy because their wounds may be affected if they do that.

Author

I created and currently manage Pet Dog Owner, the website you can go to when you have questions about your dog's behavior. It is my hope that you find Pet Dog Owner to be a helpful resource. It is also my hope that it will help you to improve your relationship with your dog. You can read more about me and my website here.