Ultrasound examination for a cat – how to prepare a kitty?

Ultrasound is a method often used in veterinary diagnostics. This examination is able to provide us with much valuable information about the health of the animal. However, the results will only be reliable if our pet is properly prepared for its performance.


When is an ultrasound examination performed in cats?

Ultrasound is a method of examination and imaging performed by means of ultrasound. Ultrasonography is a non-invasive and painless way allows us to look at the internal organs and catch the pathological changes taking place in them. Today ultrasound examination supports veterinary diagnostics in so many fields that it is impossible to list here all indications for its performance. Thanks to this method we can look at the muscles, joints, thyroid, neck, chest, heart and organs in the abdominal cavity. Ultrasound is therefore recommended when we want to assess the condition of the kidneys, liver, bladder or exclude the accumulation of fluid in the pleural or peritoneal cavity. It is also recommended to suspect cancer, the presence of a foreign body, organ failure or the occurrence of inflammation. In addition, ultrasound is the basic examination performed during pregnancy, in the diagnosis of congenital defects, with difficulties in excretion or urination.


Advantages of cat ultrasound

As already mentioned, USG can support medical diagnostics in many fields. One of the main advantages of this method is the possibility of its comprehensive use. Moreover, ultrasonography is a painless and non-invasive examination, so it can be repeated many times.
How to prepare your cat for an ultrasound?

→ Starvation

When preparing a cat for ultrasound examination, we must first of all make sure that our cat’s belly is empty. Filled stomach may cover the liver or adrenals. Also, the presence of faecal masses in the intestines makes it impossible to see them accurately, as it is then difficult to see significant diagnostic changes. The cat should fast for 8-12 hours before USG examination. Many veterinarians also recommend liquid Esperanto in order to remove gases from the intestines. An enema is also used occasionally.

If your pet is actually to be fasting, you should prevent him from accessing food completely. So let’s not only hide the cat’s bowls but also make sure that the cat does not eat our food, as well as that of other domestic pets. When we grow grass for the cat in pots and it should disappear from the reach of her muzzle for that time. In the case of outgoing animals, we should also make sure that they do not leave the house during fasting.

→ Drinking

While the food in the gastrointestinal tract can make an ultrasound examination impossible, urinary tract examination is only possible when the bladder is full. We must make sure that our cat drinks properly and does not urinate before the examination. A simple trick can help us to do this by hiding the cat’s tray.

Is it necessary to shave the pet before the ultrasound examination?

When performing an ultrasound, it is important that the ultrasound probe is in full contact with the skin. The hairs form a barrier that prevents penetration of the ultrasound, so in most cases, it is necessary to shave them. However, this is always decided by the vet. He or she will also do it, if necessary, before performing the procedure with an electric razor to shave the animal.


Is the ultrasound examination performed under anaesthesia?

In the vast majority of cases, ultrasound does not require the administration of anaesthetic drugs to the cat. Usually, 2-3 people manage to keep and immobilize the pet for the duration of the examination. However, if the cat behaves extremely aggressively, refuses to cooperate and makes the task difficult, then the doctor may decide to administer an anaesthetic.