If your vet orders an ultrasound for your pet, there is no need to panic or sound the alarm. The pet ultrasound is a routine procedure that can offer clarity for your pet’s medical condition. Your vet can walk you through all the necessary steps, so you feel confident about what to expect from the procedure. In the meantime, the information in this blog can give you a starting point of reassurance.
Before and Day of the Ultrasound
The following are several important tips to remember before and on the day of your pet’s ultrasound appointment:
- First and foremost, follow any instructions your vet gives to you, and make sure the vet knows about any and all special circumstances about your animal, such as anxiety issues. The more your vet knows about your pet, the more the vet can take all the right precautions to make the procedure run smoothly. Ask questions of your vet if any of the steps doesn’t make sense to you.
- Make certain that your pet has no food or water right before the procedure. Food and gas in the stomach and intestines can get in the way of a clear image.
- When transporting your pet to the clinic or hospital, remain calm and upbeat. Your pet can sense your mood, and you don’t want your loved one to pick up on any of your fears right before the procedure.
Understandably, you may have a strong impulse to stay in the room with your loved one during the pet ultrasound service, but vets do not generally recommend your accompaniment unless there’s a sound medical reason. Actually, many animals do quite well on their own, even if you are a bundle of nerves.
During the Ultrasound
Below is what your cat, dog, or other animal is likely to experience during the ultrasound diagnostic service:
- This first point sounds scarier than it actually is. Your pet will have to be carefully restrained on a padded table, most likely, in order for the procedure to go smoothly and speedily and for the images to appear clearly. Generally, your pet will not require anesthesia for this procedure. If, for some reason, the vet feels anesthesia is necessary, you will discuss and agree to this matter before they proceed with the procedure.
- Expect your pet to be shaved in the area where the ultrasound is to take place. For example, if your pet is getting an abdominal ultrasound, then your pet’s abdominal area will receive a haircut!
- The entire process, from restraining to shaving to imaging, can take between 30 and 60 minutes. More often than not, you can leave the premises during the procedure. You can certainly stay in the waiting area, though, if you prefer. If the ultrasound is for a pregnant animal, then you are able to join your pet at some point to see images of the babies. Waiting is often the hardest part!
- Specialists in diagnostic services may interpret the results along with your vet, if necessary, before you and your vet confer about the results and any next steps. The urgency of the situation plays a factor in the lag time between the ultrasound procedure and the discussion of results. Make sure to check with your vet in advance, so you have a clear understanding of the timeline.
Ultrasounds Have Been Around for a Long Time
Pet ultrasound services tend to run like well-oiled machines. Although you may not be used to your pet having an ultrasound, your vet is used to performing them on animals of all kinds. Ultimately, various staff members are present to make sure you and your pet have a comfortable and safe experience.