Subcutaneous fluids (SQF) are used in patients needing fluid support or therapy when IV fluids are not indicated or hospitalization is not possible. SQF can help prevent dehydration in patients not eating well and in those needing intermittent fluid therapy but not hospitalization (eg, patients with chronic kidney disease [CKD]).1 Mild dehydration cases caused by short durations of vomiting or diarrhea may also benefit from SQF. 

Veterinary nurses can teach clients to administer SQF at home, which has several benefits:

  • Home administration may lead to lower stress levels for the patient.
  • SQF can encourage a client’s active role in the pet’s care, strengthening the human–animal bond.
  • SQF can provide an alternative option for clients with financial constraints, although it may be less effective than IV fluid therapy, which requires hospitalization and skilled monitoring.

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