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X-Rays for Dogs - What to Expect

X-Rays for Dogs - What to Expect

Did you know that just like people dogs can also have X-rays done to examine their internal structures? Below, our New Ulm vets talk about what to expect when your dog is having an X-ray and what they can show us about their body and health.

What are X-rays for dogs able to help diagnose?

When it comes to medical diagnostics, X-rays are one of the most widely used tools. X-rays can help vets to get a view of your pet's bones, tissues, and internal organs so that they can diagnose issues such as broken bones, bladder stones, swallowing foreign objects, and more.

Using X-rays, your vet is able to spot and diagnose a number of internal conditions such as broken bones, tumors, enlarged organs and more which can help diagnose various conditions and diseases like cancer.

A detailed view of organs, tissues, and ligaments cannot be obtained using X-ray technology. If you are looking for a more detailed view of the soft tissues within your pet's body then the vet may recommend an MRI or ultrasound.

An X-ray of a pregnant dog can also help you to prepare for the birth of puppies by allowing you to know how many puppies your dog is expecting, as well as whether or not your dog will be in need of intervention during delivery such as undergoing a c-section.

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What can I do to prepare for my dog's X-ray appointment?

Many times, the animals that our vets see are brought in for urgent care after an accident. This means that no preparation needs to be done prior to your dog having an X-ray. Once your vet has determined that an X-ray is the best option for diagnosing your pet they will share information about the process as well as what they will be looking for on the X-ray image.

Will my dog need to be asleep or sedated in order to have an X-ray?

Some dogs are excited and others might be nervous. If this is the case for your dog then your vet may recommend having your pup sedated for the X-ray. If your dog is not seriously injured and is able to sit still for the X-ray then the vet may complete the visit without the use of sedation.

 Other reasons why sedation may be used during your pup's X-ray include if the dog's muscles need to be relaxed in order to get a clear image, or when the X-ray is of the skull, teeth or spine.

Do I need to worry about my dog's safety with X-rays?

The use of X-rays as a diagnostic tool is irreplaceable and while this diagnostic test requires radiation, the levels are low enough that it is deemed safe for pets. If your dog is expecting puppies then your vet may utilize X-rays to get a look at them although ultrasounds and other types of diagnostic imaging may work better for this purpose.

If you would like to speak in detail about the safety of your pet during their X-ray please talk to your vet. Your veterinarian can answer your questions and give you an understanding of the risks versus the benefits in your dog's particular case so that you can decide whether you want your dog to have an X-ray. 

What is the cost of my dog having an X-ray?

There are a number of factors that will affect the cost of your dog's X-ray appointment including the qualifications fo the vet, the location, what services your dog needs, if any medications or diagnostics are used and more. If you are concerned about the cost of your pup's X-rays, ask your vet for an estimate before proceeding.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

If your dog is in need of diagnostic services or is in need of urgent care, please contact our New Ulm vets right away to have your pet examined.

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