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X-Rays for Dogs

X-rays, otherwise known as radiographs, are an important tool used in diagnosing and monitoring your pet's health. Here, our vets in Cumming discuss the purpose of X-rays for dogs and what to expect during this diagnostic procedure.

What do X-rays show us?

X-rays are a highly valuable diagnostic tool in animal healthcare. This non-invasive technique lets your vet view your dog's internal structures, including bones, tissues, and organs. X-ray images can aid in diagnosing various health issues, such as broken bones, bladder stones, and swallowed foreign objects. They 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. MRI and ultrasound may be more appropriate for more comprehensive diagnostic imaging.

X-rays of pregnant dogs can be helpful when preparing for the birth of puppies. It can reveal how many puppies a dog is carrying and whether a C-section delivery may be necessary.

Do you need to prepare your dog for an X-ray?

X-rays are often done without planning. This is because they are often performed on pets 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. 

Is sedation necessary for X-rays?

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

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 an X-ray on a dog?

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 safe 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, 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.

How much do X-rays cost for dogs?

If your dog needs an X-ray, the cost will depend on factors such as its size, 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 your dog's X-ray costs, you should discuss these with your vet before the procedure. 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 Crestview Animal Hospital & Emergency 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 signs of a condition requiring a veterinary exam, including diagnostics? Please contact our vets in Cumming to schedule an appointment.

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Crestview Animal Hospital & Emergency is always welcoming new patients! Our Cumming vets provide veterinary services designed to promote good health and longevity. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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