Surgery and Anesthesia

Our surgical suite is packed with everything we need to perform a variety of surgeries - everything from a routine spay to removing a blockage from your pet's intestines. We also perform tumor removals and other surgeries as needed. 


Our dental services include teeth cleaning and polishing, digital dental radiography, tooth extractions, and minor oral surgery, all performed under general anesthesia. Because of the unique nature of our patients, they must be anesthetized for dental procedures.

Here at Ringgold Animal Hospital, we do a thorough physical exam on your pet before administering anesthetics, to ensure that a fever or other illness won't be a problem. We tailor every patient's anesthesia to their individually-assessed risk level. The drugs that we use are the safest available, and our dedicated anesthesia technician extensively utilizes state-of-the-art monitors for every patient's vital signs while they are under anesthesia. Today's modern anesthetic monitors have made surgery much safer than in the past. 


All patients that are anesthetized for procedures longer than 5 minutes receive an intravenous catheter and are given fluids throughout their procedure. The catheter allows us to administer any needed medications directly into your pet's bloodstream, while fluids help to support their blood pressure during the procedure.


For pets 7 years old or older, we require preanesthetic labwork to help evaluate their anesthetic risk class.  This testing allows us to assess the liver and kidneys prior to administering anesthetic. We typically perform the preanesthetic panel a few days before the scheduled surgical or dental procedure to allow processing time at the lab. If there is a problem, it is much better to find it before it causes anesthetic or surgical complications. The blood panel also allows us to tailor our protocol to the specific patient and ensure the lowest risk to your pet. If serious problems are detected, surgery can be postponed until the problem is corrected.


It is important that surgery be done on an empty stomach to reduce the risk of vomiting during and after anesthesia.  You will need to withhold food for at least 8 to 10 hours before your pet is dropped off for an anesthetic procedure.  Water can be left down for the pet until the morning of surgery.


For many surgeries, we use absorbable sutures underneath the skin.  These will dissolve on their own and do not need to be removed later.  Some surgeries, especially tumor removals, do require skin stitches.  With either type of suture, you will need to keep an eye on the incision for swelling or discharge.  Most dogs and cats do not lick excessively or chew at the incision, but this is an occasional problem you will need to watch for.  If there are skin sutures, these will usually be removed 10 to 14 days after surgery.  You will also need to limit your pet's activity level for a time and no baths are allowed for the first 10 days after surgery, or until sutures are removed.

Dr. Gerard Clarke

Dr. Jimmy Emerson

Small Animal Medicine & Surgery

by Appointment

6999 Nashville Street

Ringgold, GA 30736


Ph: (706) 937-7387

Monday 8:30a-5:30p

Tuesday  8:30a-5:30p

Wednesday CLOSED

Thursday  8:30a-5:30p

Friday  8:30a-5:30p

Saturday  8:30a-1:30p

Sunday CLOSED 

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