An ultrasound is a diagnostic tool that uses sound waves to create an image of a body part.

During an ultrasound, the veterinarian uses a computer with a handheld probe. The probe is moved across the skin’s surface over the site of interest.

The sound waves generated by the ultrasound are not harmful or painful to the cat or dog. The majority of patients do not need sedation as they
are comfortably laying in a padded trough during the test.

When Would a Dog or Cat Need an Ultrasound? 

Here are a few reasons why your pet may need an ultrasound:

  1. Heart Conditions
  2. Abnormal Blood or Urine Test Results

If your veterinarian finds abnormalities in your pet’s blood or urine tests, they may recommend an abdominal ultrasound.

  1. Examination of Other Soft Tissues

Ultrasounds can be used to evaluate:

  1. Thyroid glands
  2. Fetal viability and development
  3. Eyes
  4. All abdominal organs
  5. Liver, spleen or bladder abnormalities

Sometimes objects like cloth, paper, plant material, or thin plastic may not be seen on x-rays but can be found using ultrasound.

Ultrasound can also provide information as to whether a dog or cat with a Gastrointestinal foreign body needs to be immediately taken to
surgery or if it can be managed medically.