Should I Hire a Pet Sitter During My Rhinoplasty?
The decision to have someone look after your four-legged – or flying, swimming or slithering – friend while you recover from a nose job is entirely personal. Here, we help you decide whether enlisting a friend or hiring a pet sitter to care for your fur (or feathered, finned) baby following rhinoplasty makes sense for you.
Prior to Surgery
There are several things that you can do prior to rhinoplasty surgery to ensure the comfort and safety of both yourself and your pet:
In total, your nose job will require you to be away from home for four or five hours (this includes: travel to the surgery centre, arrival one hour prior to your surgery, one hour in surgery and one hour after surgery for recovery, plus travel home). If your pet can’t be left alone for that long, ask a friend/neighbour or a professional pet sitter/walker to stop by your home during this time to care for your pet as needed.
First 12 Hours of Recovery
While pain isn’t a factor for most patients after rhinoplasty surgery, you may experience fatigue from your medications and/or some discomfort due to swelling/bruising on your face. You’ll need to take it very easy in the hours following your nose job (i.e., get plenty of rest and avoid doing any activity at all). As such, ensure your caretaker – the person who is staying with you for the first 12 hours of recovery – can cover your pet’s needs during this time. If he/she isn’t an animal lover, make other arrangements to have your pet cared for either in or away from your home:
Day 1 of Recovery
Once the first 12 hours of recovery are up, you’ll be ready to get up and out of bed. While you still need to avoid strenuous activity at this point, some light activities related to your pet (like feeding or an easy stroll) are perfectly acceptable. Since you’ll need to be careful not to hit/bump your nose, playing may be out of the question, especially if you have a rambunctious puppy or kitten. Similarly, a dog that requires a lot of exercise will likely need to be walked by either a friend or a professional.
Days 2-7 of Recovery
While you still need to take it easy, avoid lifting heavy objects and take care not to injure your nose, you should be feeling well enough to get out of the house (getting fresh air and keeping your energy up will actually aid in your recovery). As such, it’s perfectly OK to take your dog out for a light stroll as needed. The only factor that may influence your decision will be your appearance: you’ll have a cast on your nose and possibly some slight bruising on your face. While these can easily be hidden with a hat and scarf, some patients may feel too self-conscious at this point to leave the house. If you anticipate this being an issue, ask a friend or professional to come by daily to walk your dog. Or, kennel your pet for the first week of your recovery after rhinoplasty surgery.
Week 2 of Recovery
Your cast will be removed one week after your rhinoplasty surgery; at this point, much of the swelling/bruising you may have experienced will have disappeared, too. You’ll also be able to get back to many of your normal activities, though strenuous activities like hiking and running should be avoided for another seven or so days. If your pet requires a lot of exercise, you may want to continue having a friend or professional dog walker look after it – or consider kenneling it for a while longer.