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X-Rays for Dogs

X-rays, or radiographs, are diagnostic tools used to diagnose conditions and monitor your pet's internal health. Here, our vets in Brooklyn share some information about X-rays for dogs, including their purpose, safety and cost.

What will the vet learn from my dog's X-rays?

X-rays are a commonly used and highly valuable diagnostic tool in human and animal healthcare. They can help your vet gain a clear view of your dog's internal structures, including bones, tissues, and organs. This can aid in diagnosing a range of health issues, such as broken bones, bladder stones, and swallowed foreign objects. X-ray images can also assist in identifying tumors, pregnancy, and enlarged organs, which may indicate conditions like heart disease or cancer.

However, while X-rays are helpful in many cases, they may not provide a detailed view of organs, tissues, and ligaments. Techniques such as MRI and ultrasound may be more appropriate for more comprehensive diagnostic imaging.

If you have a pregnant dog, an X-ray can be particularly beneficial in preparing for the birth of puppies. It can reveal how many puppies your dog is expecting and whether a C-section delivery may be necessary.

How can I prepare my dog for an X-ray?

X-rays are often done without planning. This is because they are often performed on pets who have been brought in for illness or injury. Because of this, no preparation is required. Your vet will be able to examine your pet, and then, if an x-ray is required, they will take some time to walk you through the procedure and what they will be looking for from it. 

Will my dog need to be sedated for an X-ray?

In some cases, performing X-rays will require sedation. If your dog is calm, not in too much pain, and can lie comfortably during the X-ray, sedation will not be necessary.

On the other hand, if your pup is squirming, edgy, or in pain, sedation may be recommended by your vet. Some other reasons why sedation may be advised during your pup's x-ray include if your dog's muscles need to be relaxed to gain a clear image or when the ray is of their spine, skull, or teeth.

How long does it take to perform X-ray imaging?

While the entire visit takes a little longer, your dog's actual X-rays only take about 10 minutes to complete. The rest of the time is devoted to preparing for the procedure, evaluating the images and your dog, any additional treatments your dog will have, and a final discussion with you about the results.

Are X-rays a safe procedure for dogs?

Although X-rays are commonly used as a diagnostic tool for dogs, it is important to note that some radiation is involved. As a result, X-rays are only used occasionally. In certain situations, such as during a dog's pregnancy, vets may use X-rays to obtain information. However, other imaging techniques, like ultrasound devices, may be used instead.

If you have concerns about the use of X-ray technology and your dog's well-being, it is recommended that you speak with your veterinarian. Your vet can provide a thorough understanding of the risks and benefits associated with X-rays in your dog's specific case, allowing you to make an informed decision about whether or not to proceed with an X-ray.

How much do X-rays cost for dogs?

Various factors can impact the expense of your dog's X-ray, such as the size of your pet, the specific area being examined, and whether or not sedation was administered.

Additionally, the geographical location of your veterinarian clinic and the type of clinic may also play a part. If you have concerns about the cost of your dog's x-ray, requesting an estimate from your vet before the procedure is recommended. That said, if your vet recommends an X-ray, then the health and treatment of your dog likely rely on it, and it should be performed.

Our diagnostic laboratory at Heart of Brooklyn Veterinary Hospital is fully equipped to manage diagnostics, including comprehensive imaging.

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.

Is your dog showing symptoms of an injury that requires veterinary care, including X-rays or other diagnostics? Please contact the vets at one of our two convenient locations in Brooklyn.

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Heart of Brooklyn Veterinary Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Brooklyn companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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