Frequently Asked Questions
Texas Coalition for Animal Protection (TCAP) is a nonprofit organization that provides low-cost services to those qualified for assistance programs. TCAP provides services to those who are indigent and lack sufficient means to provide medical care for their pets. TCAP is able to provide subsidized savings at our clinics thanks to the generosity of our donors and sponsors. These savings allow our clients to care for their pets using low-cost co-pays. We keep our prices low so that we can be a resource for the community.
To keep our operating costs down, TCAP only provides a very limited amount of services. Sick and injured pets should see full-service hospitals that can provide the diagnostic care that they need to fully recover.
We accept cash, Visa, MasterCard, and Discover. We cannot accept checks, Care Credit, or American Express.
Yes, we contract caring veterinarians who specialize in spay/neuter surgeries and preventative care.
If TCAP’s veterinarian determines a patient does not meet the minimum health requirements for services, the patient will be declined to ensure the patient’s health. This declination of service is for a pet’s well-being and the patient will be referred to local, full-service hospitals for care.
My pet is wearing an e-collar (cone) — Your pet is likely not accustomed to the e-collar. Often, it takes pets some time to become acclimated to the e-collar. Try lifting the e–collar with one hand and encouraging him to move around a bit to see if this helps.
My pet is not wearing an e-collar (cone) — If your pet had surgery recently, your pet may be nauseous and need to be led to a place to lay down for a while. Be sure to check your pet’s incision daily and make sure it is still intact, not oozing or bleeding, and shows no signs of infection. Offer your pet a little bit of food and water. Monitor their bowel movements and ensure they are not straining to urinate or defecate. Your pet may not be very hungry, or may vomit if they had surgery in the last 24 hours. However, if it isn’t nausea, bring your pet in during our walk-in vaccine hours for a vet to make an assessment.
No, do not give your pet’s pain medication early. Your pet has had a 24-hour pain injection in our clinic that will last until 5 p.m. the day following surgery. Giving the medication early could cause complications with their other organs and overdose your pet.
We do NOT recommend removing the cone, at any time, unless the full 14 days have passed. If your pet is having issues eating/drinking out of their bowls, try elevating their bowls with a small box, or stack of books. This should allow their mouth to reach the bowl before the cone hits the ground.
How long has your pet been lethargic (feeling too weak to get up and move around)?
Within 24 hours of surgery — your pet is likely still nauseous from the anesthesia. It can cause nausea for up to 24 hours. If your pet does not improve by the end of the second day, please come in during our walk-in vaccine hours for one of our veterinarians to make an assessment.
Two+ days post-surgery — Please come in during our walk-in vaccine hours for one of our veterinarians to make an assessment. If you feel this is a life-threatening condition, please see your full-service veterinarian or an emergency clinic.
Your pet is likely still nauseous from the anesthesia. Anesthesia can cause nausea for up to 24 hours. If your pet does not improve by the end of the second day after surgery, please come in during our walk-in vaccine hours for one of our veterinarians to make an assessment.
We recommend bringing your pet to us during our walk-in vaccine hours. Please discontinue any medication your pet is currently taking. When you arrive, let our staff know your pet is there for a surgical recheck so we may triage them accordingly.
Your pet is likely still nauseous from the anesthesia.
Anesthesia can cause nausea for up to 24 hours. Please don’t try to force your pet to eat or drink, they will do so when their stomach is settled. If your pet does not accept food and water within the next 24 hours, please come in during our walk-in vaccine hours for one of our veterinarians to make an assessment.
Please come in during our walk-in vaccine hours for one of our veterinarians to make an assessment. Let our staff know your pet is there for a surgical recheck when you arrive.
If your pet is straining to urinate or defecate, please come see us immediately during our walk-in vaccination hours.
If your pet is straining to go but cannot and is also exhibiting vomiting, listlessness, acting ill, etc, please go to an emergency clinic.
If your pet is not straining, we recommend waiting 24-48 hours to give the pet a chance to go. If they do not, please call our post-operative care line (listed on your paperwork).
If your pet still has not defecated 48 hours post-surgery, we recommend mixing a small portion of canned pumpkin into your pet’s food.
If this does not resolve the issue, please see us during our walk-in vaccine hours.
Has it been 14 days since the surgery?
Yes — Check your pet’s incision. If the incision is still sealed and doesn’t look irritated, it is fully healed and you can remove the e-collar.
No — If it has not been 14 days, please wait the full two weeks. If the incision looks healed at that point, you are good to remove the e-collar.
It is extremely difficult for our team to make an assessment of what your pet needs based on a picture. For that reason, we ask that you bring your pet in during our walk-in vaccine hours for our vet to make an assessment.
Please let our staff know your pet is there for a surgical recheck when you arrive.
Spay & Neuter
Older pets have special needs that cannot be addressed by a high-volume spay/neuter program. Older pets should have blood work done prior to surgery and very close monitoring during their procedure that TCAP cannot provide in a high-volume setting.
The anesthesia used during a spay procedure terminates any ongoing pregnancies. TCAP does not have the diagnostic equipment to test to see if a female patient has an ongoing pregnancy prior to administering anesthesia. If you suspect that a pet is pregnant and do not wish to terminate the pregnancy, we advise you to wait until the puppies/ kittens are born, weaned off the mother’s milk, and the mother’s milk is dry before coming in for a spay procedure.
We can send you a copy of your records! Please fill out our record request form.
TCAP’s caring, compassionate veterinary team spays or neuters pets at least 10 weeks old that weigh two pounds or more. However, pets must be younger than 5 years old to take part in TCAP’s program.
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