In an effort to provide your pet with superior medical care, we perform diagnostic imaging services to supplement prognosis. Medical imaging employs the use of machinery to give photographic representation of abnormalities or injuries. In performing diagnostic imaging, our veterinarian can provide safe, accurate diagnosis and promptly treat the problem.
Reasons for diagnostic imaging:
- Assess facial swelling and dental problems.
- Detect possible bladder infections.
- Determine the location of broken bones or bone fractures.
- Evaluate the status of a pet’s pregnancy.
- Help identify if a pet has heart disease.
- Help obtain a biopsy sample.
- Locate foreign bodies that a pet might have swallowed.
Types of diagnostic imaging
CT Scan - CT scans provide 3D digital images that give the veterinarian a better view of soft tissues. When compared to other forms of imaging, CT scans depict more precise details.
Digital X-rays - Radiographs (X-rays) are usually the first test administered to evaluate your pet. Our office utilizes digital X-rays because they are more accurate and display a higher contrast. Because of their accuracy, technicians are able to take fewer images resulting in less pet discomfort. Digital X-rays also project less radiation than traditional X-rays, which allows your pet to avoid unnecessary exposure.
Ultrasound - Ultrasounds are another form of 3D imaging. This diagnostic is perfect for pets in sensitive situations (e.g. pregnancy), pets that might be suffering immense pain, or pets who are partially immobile. Ultrasounds are very gentle and are typically used to examine the abdominal region.
What does diagnostic imaging involve?
The process for getting images of your pet depends on what type of diagnostic that is being performed and the size of your pet. For smaller pets, images are often taken with the pet lying down in various positions that allow our veterinarians to examine the problem area.
Pets with a disease or condition often feel increased anxiety and stress. Because of this stress, they can be uncooperative during digital imaging procedures. In these situations, our staff patiently tries to make your pet feel comfortable and guide them to cooperate. If a pet is aggressive or remains unwilling, the veterinarian may opt to mildly sedate your pet while performing diagnostic imaging. Also, for tests that require a pet to be absolutely still, anesthesia is typically administered.
If you have any questions about digital imaging services, please feel free to contact our office.
In an added effort to provide your pet with quality care, we offer pet dental services in our veterinary office. It is estimated that 80% of pets exhibit the beginning stages of periodontal disease by age 3, which is why dental exams and teeth cleanings are essential. Also, studies indicate that pets with good oral hygiene tend to live 2 to 4 years longer than pets who neglect dental care. While periodontal disease is entirely preventable, when left untreated it can lead to cardiac disease, kidney infection, liver infection, or stroke.
Reasons for regular dental check-ups:
- Avoid tooth loss due to periodontal disease.
- Help your pet avert unnecessary pain.
- Help your pet maintain healthy and functional teeth.
- Improve foul breath.
- Prevent potential damage to the brain, heart, liver, lungs, and kidneys.
What does a pet dental exam involve?
Pets can experience many of the same dental issues that humans do, including gingivitis, periodontal disease, necessary tooth extraction, and deep scaling. Regular dental exams and cleanings can help you avoid the costliness of involved dental procedures and can help prevent your pet from unnecessary suffering.
Pet dental exams are similar to human dental exams and involve teeth cleaning and buffing. Additional services offered include sedation dentistry and dental X-rays. If more serious conditions are discovered, root canals, tooth extraction, etc. might be required.
During your pet’s teeth cleaning, a dental technician will gently clean the surface of the teeth with an ultrasonic scaler that cleans using the vibration of sound waves and water. The waves push the water creating tiny scrubbing bubbles that implode on tooth surfaces and kill microbes as they separate plaque from the tooth structure. After scaling the teeth, the technician lightly buffs and polishes your pet’s teeth to complete their dental cleaning.
After the cleaning, we will provide you with a comprehensive analysis of your pet’s oral health. You will receive at-home oral hygiene tips specific to your pet, and if any serious dental conditions exist, you will be notified prior to any treatment planning.
Some simple home hygiene tips are:
- Brushing your pet’s teeth as little as one time a week can cut down on 50-60% of tartar build-up.
- Dental products specifically designed for pets, including Oravet and CET, can help protect gums and lessen tartar.
- Dry pet food is better for teeth than canned food; it causes abrasion to tooth surfaces when chewed, helping remove tartar build-up. Other treats such as raw-hide can also help remove built-up plaque.
- There are many pet toys that support dental health. Buying your pets these toys not only entertains them, but offers a dual purpose in helping clean teeth.
Remember, creating a smooth clean tooth surface makes it more difficult for tartar and plaque to build up!
If you would like to schedule a professional dental cleaning for your pet, call our office to schedule an appointment, and allow your pet to experience a healthy smile!