Laparoscopic Neutering (Keyhole spey)

Laparoscopic neutering (keyhole speys)

We are pleased to announce we are now offering laparoscopic (“key-hole”) spays to our clients and their pets. We are also launching this as a new referral service for other local veterinary practices. We have recently invested in state-of-the-art laparoscopic equipment and our new vet Lucy Hartwell is very experienced with laparoscopic neutering procedures.

Laparoscopic bitch spays are a much less invasive alternative to a traditional “open” bitch spay. This means there is often a much faster recovery as well as less post-operative discomfort.


What is involved in a laparoscopic bitch spay?

The procedure is performed under general anaesthetic so your pet will be completely unaware of it.  This allows the  introduction of a tiny camera and various surgical instruments into the abdomen via small incisions (known as ports).  The surgeon is then able to see the inside of the patient’s abdomen on the screen & perform the procedure remotely. Electro-surgery is used to close the blood vessels, rather than traditional ligatures (or stitches). The ovaries are removed via the ports. In a laparoscopic spay we only remove the ovaries (ovariectomy) as opposed to removing the ovaries & uterus (ovarihysterectomy).

The technique requires specialist equipment and training therefore it will cost an extra £200 in comparison to a traditional bitch spay.

Are there any risks with just perform an ovariectomy?

Studies have shown that once the ovaries (and therefore hormones) have been removed there is no increased risk of developing uterine infection (also known as pyometras) in the future. It is becoming common practice in the UK to only perform ovariectomies in both the open procedure as well as in the laparoscopic procedure.

What are the advantages of laparoscopic surgery?

  1. Decreased pain during the procedure allowing us to keep the patient under a lighter plane of anaesthesia
  2. Decreased post-operative pain leading to a happier pet & faster recovery
  3. Only two very small incisions (approx. <1cm) & no external stitches
  4. Reduced risk of patient interference with surgical wounds (in most cases there is no requirement for a buster collar).
  5. A faster return to normal, pain & risk free activity/exercise – in a lot of cases they can go off lead after their three day check.

Are there any possible complications?

In rare circumstances we may have to convert to a routine midline spay. The main reasons for this would be if the surgeon felt it was important to remove the uterus as well as the ovaries or if there was bleeding obstructing the surgeon’s view which couldn’t be dealt with use the laparoscopic instruments.

Are there any other differences with open bitch spays?

You will notice the hair clip required for laparoscopy is wider than traditional spay due to the way the technique is carried out.

How do book my dog  into Wilbury for a laparoscopic bitch spay?

Just call us or email or if you’re not a client of ours, please ask your vet to fill out the online referral form below or email

  • Referral Practice Information

    Please email us a full clinical history and we will contact your client to arrange and appointment for laparoscopic neutering. We will let you know when this is carried out and are happy to carry out post-operative checks here if you prefer us to.
  • Owner Details

  • Pet Details

  • See our Privacy Notice for full details of how we process your personal data.