Chapter 2: Table of Contents
Surgical preparation of the limb is similar to other surgical sites. First, the hair is clipped 10-15 cm proximal and distal to the proposed surgical incision site and around the entire circumference of the limb. Because the paw is generally difficult to clip, when the proposed incision is far enough from the paw, it is often left intact and the hair is covered with tape and elastic wrap to prevent gross contamination.
To cover the foot, two stirrups made of non-elastic tape are placed opposite one another on either side of the foot. The stirrups are placed with half of their length over the distal limb while extending the other half beyond the end of the limb. Leaving the second strip of tape attached to the roll will allow the limb to be hung and affixed to a hook or an IV pole. The stirrups and the unclipped paw are then covered with elastic wrap. The limb is held in an appropriate position and the roll of tape extending from the second stirrup is wrapped around an IV pole to secure the limb in a hanging position. The hanging limb technique facilitates clipping and skin preparation. Loose hair is vacuumed before skin preparation is performed.