Our practice is currently operating with fewer staff than usual therefore we kindly ask you to plan ahead when booking your appointment.

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Pet Advice Categories

The Facilities at Animal Ark Vets, Ilford

  • We are proud of our wards and hospitalisation facilities.
  • We have separate cat and dog wards for comfort, a recovery ward for monitoring pets coming out of surgery and an isolation ward for those with possible nasties that we don’t want anybody else to catch.
  • We utilise equipment such as ‘drip pumps’ to ensure a constant treatment rate for those on fluid therapy.
  • We have nurses assigned to the wards 24 hours a day.

Our Approach

  • We really do want you to understand what we are doing and why.
  • If you have any questions about what we do or your pet’s condition/procedure, please ask.
  • We believe pets recover best in their home environment.
  • So we will only propose keeping your pet in our care if it is in your pet’s best interest.

Our Promise

  • We will make every effort to keep your pet’s stay as comfortable as possible, and make a fuss!
  • We will carry out the procedure in a professional manner, with due diligence, care and respect.

Your Bit – Pre Admission Instructions

  • To assist us, it is necessary to follow certain procedures before we can proceed.
  • Unless otherwise instructed, please give no food after 8pm the evening before surgery and take water away one-hour before admission.  Please no treats and no cheating! An empty stomach is critical for safe anaesthesia. DO NOT HOWEVER restrict food or fluids for rabbits and other small mammals such as guinea pigs.
  • If your pet is taking medication, give the normal dosage at the usual time unless otherwise directed. If your pet is diabetic, please ask us for special instructions.
  • Allow your pet exercise and time to empty bowel and bladder before being admitted unless otherwise instructed.


  • At admission, you will need to complete consent forms. At the same time:
    • We will confirm the procedures to be carried out
    • We will confirm what food and drink your pet has had
    • We will confirm if there is any medication you have given your pet
    • One of our team will explain if it is anticipated your pet’s stay will be for the day or possibly require longer care.
    • We need to ensure we have your best contact number should we need to discuss your pet’s care with you.
  • Scheduled admissions are carried out between 8am and 9.30am Monday to Friday.
  • For surgical procedures, a pre-anaesthetic sedation is normally given shortly after admission.

Day Procedures

  • These are the majority of surgical procedures we carry out including neutering, soft tissue surgery, dentals, x-rays and minor orthopaedics.
  • Typically, your pet should be ready to go home from 3.30pm onwards.
  • If you like, we can send a text message when your pet is in recovery to give you peace of mind.
  • Otherwise, please phone 02085998544 between 2.30pm and 3.15pm to confirm when your pet is ready to go home and a best collection time.

Overnight Care

  • If your pet needs to stay in and requires overnight care, this will be discussed with you.
  • You can take comfort in knowing that we have a vet and nurse on call and the nurse will be present on the premises throughout the night.

Going Home

  • We will schedule a discharge appointment with you during which a member of our team will explain the treatment carried out, expected condition over the next 24 hours, home care instructions and any follow up appointment.
  • At the time of discharge, a post procedure handout will also be given to you along with copies of any blood results.

Phoning in for an Update

  • Whilst you have the comfort of knowing the quality of our facilities and veterinary care team, we understand it can be stressful leaving your pet with us.
  • We would appreciate your help by sticking to the suggested phone in times (usually 2.30pm-3.15pm unless otherwise instructed).
  • This lets us focus on the most important bit, physically looking after your pet.

Other Things to Consider

  • Pre-Anaesthetic Screening: We recommend performing pre-anaesthetic blood tests which will be carried out in our laboratory. Typical profiles confirm kidney and liver function. Advantages include minimising the surgical and anaesthetic risk by assisting us to uncover any potential problems that are not obvious. Abnormalities may lead to a decision to defer the procedure until corrected or may merely indicate a change in the choice of anaesthetic or pre-procedure treatment. Fully healthy patients also benefit as results provide a ‘baseline’ for future reference.
  • Microchip: Implanting an ID microchip under anaesthesia means one less needle to feel.
  • Dental Disease: If there is any degree of dental disease, and if circumstances permit, appropriate dental treatment.
  • Nail trimming: Stress free whilst under anaesthesia. If you want this done we will do so with our compliments.
  • Ear cleaning: Stress free whilst under anaesthesia. If you want this done we will do so with our compliments.

Frequently Asked Question – What type of anaesthetic will be used?

  • Similar to human medicine, today’s anaesthetics and anaesthetic monitors have been developed to make procedures much safer than in the past.
  • A thorough physical exam will be performed before administering anaesthetics to reduce the risk of fever or other illness.
  • The amount and type of anaesthetic that will be used is determined based upon a pre procedure examination and any pre-anaesthetic blood tests.
  • Some short procedures are conducted under short acting anaesthetics injected into the muscle or vein.
  • Most longer procedures are carried out under gas anaesthesia, delivered through a tube placed in the windpipe.

Frequently Asked Question – Will my pet experience discomfort?

  • To limit the possibility of discomfort, we will consider using the following:
    • Anti-inflammatory injections on the day of the procedure.
    • Local anaesthetics on the incision site to keep your pet more comfortable for the first few hours after surgery.
    • Oral pain reliever/anti-inflammatory to reduce the risk of discomfort and swelling. The course may be started 24 hours prior to the procedure and then continued for four to five days after the procedure.
    • Anti-nausea medication to reduce the possibility of stomach upsets.

Contact us for more information or book your next appointment today