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Most animals requiring surgery need to be hospitalized. For most elective surgeries, your pet would stay at Veterinary Medical Center the night before surgery and one to two nights after surgery. The duration of hospitalization, however, can vary greatly depending on the exact surgery performed, speed of recovery, and development of any complications following surgery. We will try our best to provide you with an estimated timeline for the release of your pet from the hospital. Estimate and consent forms for treatment will be provided and a deposit of 50 percent of the high end of the estimate is required prior to admission to the hospital.

Our patient housing area consists of medium to large kennels and larger runs for large and giant-breed dogs. Cats are housed separately in a specialized Cat Ward. Blankets, towels, dishes, and food are provided. You may leave a blanket or toy with your pet, however, we discourage leaving valuable and sentimental items, as they may get misplaced.

While hospitalized, a senior veterinary student is primarily responsible for your pet's care. This includes, walking, cleaning, feeding, and assessing your pet's needs. Surgery residents and faculty evaluate your pet several times daily as well. The student or clinician will contact you with updates on your pet approximately twice daily. If you have questions about your pet while he or she is hospitalized, please feel free to contact us through the front desk at 515-294-4900. Please understand that sometimes we are unavailable - either in surgery or with another patient - and we will return your call as soon as possible.

At the time of discharge from the hospital, the senior veterinary student and attending clinician will give you instructions regarding your pet’s aftercare, required medications, and follow-up. You will receive written release information that summarizes your pet’s tests, treatments and home care instructions, a copy of which will also be sent to your regular veterinarian.




Pet Food

At the ISU-LVMC, we have many commercially available pet foods, including Hill's Science Diet and Iams. If your pet requires a special diet, please let us know, and if possible bring several meals of the food with you.