An ultrasound examination, or ultrasonography, provides our vets with a minimally stressful and useful diagnostic method to observe any changes or abnormalities in your pet’s organs. They can be used to study heart conditions and look at the abdominal organs.

Pet ultrasounds also provide confirmation of pregnancy and are generally considered to be a safe and effective measure with no risk to the litter. They can be conducted quickly and safely as they are painless and there is no anaesthesia required.

Why are ultrasounds recommended?

Dog and cat ultrasounds can allow for earlier diagnosing of internal abnormalities, and identify nodules, masses, cysts and abscesses. These cannot be seen externally and require diagnostic imaging for detection. When conditions are diagnosed earlier, this leads to more successful treatment outcomes and quicker recover times.

They can be used to diagnose:

  • Bladder and bladder stones
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
  • Fluid within the abdominal region
  • Abnormal blood vessels
  • Adrenal abnormalities
  • Uterine infections
  • Diagnosis of pregnancy
  • Heart diseases
Do I have to prepare anything for an ultrasound?

Your pet will be required to abstain from food during the night before.

It may be required for your pet to be shaved before an examination can take place. Ultrasound waves cannot be transmitted by air, and certain cases may require your pet’s fur to be shaved.

In some cases, such as pregnancy diagnosis, it may be possible to form images of acceptable quality by moistening the hair with rubbing alcohol and applying plenty of ultrasound gel.

Ultrasound images will be clearer and of a better quality if the area is shaved, and it is generally recommended for a more accurate and certain diagnosis.

How long does it take for the ultrasound results?

Ultrasounds can produce results in real-time, and a typical scan may take anytime from 30 to 60 minutes.

Severe and specialized conditions may require different methods of screening or diagnostics such as a CT scan.