Causes & what you can do

If your own dog has to have an operation, this causes fear and concern for many dog ​​owners. Something is responsible for this anesthetic riskwhich is present in every operation.

Your dog seems to have survived the anesthetic well, but then you suddenly realize that your Dog completely changed after surgery is?

We can reassure you first, because that’s not uncommon! In this article you will find out why this can be and how you can help your dog to get back on its feet quickly.

Dog completely changed after surgery – why is that?

If the dog has changed completely after an operation, this can be due to the after-effects of the general anaesthetic.

Every dog ​​is individual and so one tolerates general anesthesia better and another worse. Above all, the general health and the age of the dog a role.

Besides, it depends Type of anesthesia and awakening at. There are injection anesthesia and inhalation anesthesia. In the case of injection anesthesia, late effects occur more often after waking up than with inhalation anesthesia that can be better dosed.

If the dog is additionally recovery syringe awakened, the risk increases intermittent behavioral change after surgery.


This can be explained quite simply: We humans also have the so-called passage syndrome after operations. It is not uncommon for disorientation, thinking and memory disorders, hallucinations, listlessness, restlessness or confusion to occur as a result of general anesthesia.

If the dog is now brought out of the anesthetic with a wake-up injection, these symptoms can occur more frequently. As a rule, however, it is a temporary condition that subsides after a few weeks.

How long does general anesthesia last?

It takes time some hours, until your dog is fully awake again after a general anaesthetic. During this time it is important to let him wake up as calm and protected as possible.

Unfortunately, the dog spends the Recovery phase after an operation mostly in the veterinary clinic, without its owner being allowed to be present. This makes some dogs feel more insecure and confused.

Regardless of when you pick your dog up from the veterinary clinic after surgery, you should give him as much rest as possible at home.

It always depends on the intervention, like yours gentle program looks like in the coming weeks. Please discuss this with your vet!

After your dog has had enough sleep, it will be completely lucid a few hours after the surgery or the next day at the latest.

Can my dog ​​suffer trauma from surgery?

A trauma following an operation can occur in dogs. This means a noticeable, mostly negative change in behavior.

Every dog ​​reacts differently to general anesthesia. Some dogs squeak after surgery, other dogs vomit after surgery or are restless at night. Others, on the other hand, are completely the same again a short time later.

How can I help my dog?

What your dog needs now is yours caring, patience and love. Just because he’s acting differently than usual doesn’t mean you have to do the same.

On the contrary, you help your dog the most if you continue to be completely normal and, above all, calm and relaxed. You’re welcome to worry about your sick dog and pet him a little more than usual, but please don’t overdo it.

Anything you now build up trust can help your dog. He needs to regain his strength and that will be easier for him if he can feel completely safe with you.

Dogs are masters at hiding pain! When they’re not feeling well, it often leads to one behavior changewhich can show itself through aggression and defense but also withdrawal and fear.

Now keep a close eye on your dog and stay in close contact with your veterinarian. Please don’t hesitate to ask again if something strikes you as odd!


Yes, to a certain extent it is normal for dogs to exhibit altered behavior after general anesthesia.

There are people with us too Late effects of anesthesia No rarity. We first have to come back to life and process the surgery.

With inhalation anesthesia without a wake-up syringe, there is a lower risk that your dog will appear confused, disoriented, apathetic, listless, aggressive or otherwise changed after waking up.

It often takes several weeks for a dog to be completely the same again after an operation. Be patient and be there for your dog!

We hope that we were able to help you with this article and of course that your dog is doing well! If you have any questions about changing behavior after surgery, please write us a comment under this article!