The recovery time for a dog after being desexed is dependant on whether they are a male or a female. The operation for male dogs is not as involved as it only requires the testicles being removed. This is referred to as castration. Exercise for a male dog after desexing should be limted for a week with walks on leash and no rough play. However, male dogs generally are fine to return to their normal activity relatively soon after desexing.
With a female dog, the surgery is done in the abdomen and is a major surgical procedure. Spaying is a routine operation. If you have any concerns during the postoperative period don’t hesitate to speak to your vet.
How long after spaying can my dog play or exercise
In both cases, the skin incision will be fully healed within two weeks. With a female dog, the healing process within the abdomen will still be taking place. It is best to give no exercise during the first two weeks and for the following two weeks on leash exercise is recommended. Even going into the yard to go toilet is probably best done on a leash to prevent them from charging around. Running, jumping or over-excited play should be avoided. The last thing you want is your dog to pull the stitches resulting in an unexpected trip to the vet. You may want to consider having your dog in a crate to help prevent them being too active.
Monitor your dog during these first few weeks to ensure there is no infection around the wound or they are showing any ill effects while recovering. Consult with your vet should you have any concerns. Your vet will most likely give your dog pain relief, so they probably will be feeling ok. You may assume that your dog may want to rest after surgery. Often they may still want to be active and play.
For female dogs, their metabolism will slow up after spaying. You should reduce their daily food consumption by as much as 25 percent fewer calories than before the operation to maintain her body weight.
Dog too active after spay
This period with no or little exercise can be frustrating for a dog. Especially a high energy or very active dog. You don’t want your dog to be too active after being spayed. It is important to provide mental stimulation more so they ever during this time to prevent boredom. Read “Mental stimulation and mind enrichment for dogs” for more information. Mental exercise can help burn and tire a dog just as well as physical activity.
Puzzle toys are probably one of the best ways of providing this much needed mental enrichment. For my most recommended interactive puzzle toys see here.
Chewing is also very beneficial for your dog during this period. Chewing not only helps to keep a dog occupied. When a dog chews it releases endorphins to the brain giving them a relaxing and calming feeling. To learn more about the benefits of chew toys here.
In summary – Exercise after spaying a dog
It is recommended that your dog is not given exercise for the first two weeks after the desexing procedure and limited exercise, preferably on a leash for the following two weeks. It is important to provide mental stimulation to prevent your dog from becoming bored and frustration while on a limited exercise period. Mental exercise and chewing can tire a dog in much the same way as physical activity and help to keep them calm.