Your Local Vet Clinic and Animal Hospital
4213 Calgary Trail NW, Edmonton AB

4213 Calgary Trail NW

Edmonton AB, T6J 5P4

(587) 557-2210

Your Local Vet Clinic and Animal Hospital

Reasons Why Your Dog or Cat May Need An Ultrasound

Reasons Why Your Dog or Cat May Need An Ultrasound

Our pets often get into things they shouldn’t or develop health issues such as cysts or tumors that require treatment. Veterinary ultrasounds are non-invasive and can be used to diagnose or evaluate problems with your pet’s internal organs or check on your pet’s pregnancy.

An ultrasound can help our Edmonton vet to examine the structure of your pet’s organs so we can discover and identify blockages, tumours or other problems or do biopsy of organs like liver. It can also be used to diagnose pregnancy. There are some kinds of bladder stones only seen on an ultrasound.

At Gateway Veterinary Centre our abdominal ultrasounds can be done in-house. Our team of veterinary specialists use ultrasounds and other diagnostic tools to provide an accurate diagnosis of your pet’s medical issues, so we can provide your pet with the most effective treatment possible.

The sound waves the ultrasound generates are not harmful or painful to your cat or dog and the procedure is pain-.

Conditions That May Require An Ultrasound

Heart Conditions

If your cat or dog is diagnosed with a heart condition, your primary care vet may refer you to our specialists for a heart ultrasound or echocardiogram in order to evaluate the overall condition of your animal’s heart and to look for abnormalities. This is a service we do not offer in-house currently.

Abnormal Blood or Urine Test Results

If your vet discovers abnormalities in your pet’s blood or urine tests, they may recommend an abdominal ultrasound in order to get a clear picture of the health of your pet’s internal organs such as the lymph nodes, spleen, kidneys, liver, urinary bladder or other areas to learn why the abnormalities are occurring.


If abnormal tissue is spotted during an ultrasound, the vet may also use the ultrasound to help collect tissue samples from the affected area.

If your vet performs an ultrasound-assisted tissue collection, your pet will likely be sedated. We can perform biopsies in a less invasive manner with ultrasounds than with surgeries. Biopsy procedures may need clotting profiles done beforehand.

Pregnancy Diagnosis

Ultrasound remains the gold standard and the best non-invasive way to diagnose pregnancy.

Cancer Diagnosis

Ultrasound along with biopsies and blood work can be a powerful tool to diagnose or rule out certain cancers. We routinely recommend abdominal ultrasounds for pets diagnosed with certain cancers.

How To Prepare Your Pet for an Ultrasound

Ultrasounds on different parts of your pet’s body require different preparations. Speak to your vet to find out how to prepare your pet for their ultrasound.

You may be required to withhold food and water for between 8 and 12 hours, particularly for abdominal ultrasounds. We can best examine the urinary bladder when it is full of urine. This is why your cat or dog should not urinate for about 3 to 6 hours before the ultrasound, if possible.

The area to be examined will likely be shaved so clear images can be produced. While most pets will remain still and cooperative during the ultrasound, some will need to be sedated.

If biopsies need to be done, your pet will need a heavy sedative or short-acting anesthetic to help them relax during the procedure and prevent potential complications that could impede success. Your veterinarian will let you know if this is necessary.

Call us to book an appointment or use our online portal. Our experienced team will guide you appropriately based on your needs.

Table of Contents

Further Reading