Skip to Main Content
Ask About Financing

Ultrasounds for Cats

Your veterinarian has recommended that your cat have an ultrasound procedure. What will an ultrasound tell your vet about your cat's health? And how can it help your cat? Today, our Seattle vets answer these questions and more about vet ultrasounds.

Diagnostic Imaging for Cats

Our cats can develop all sorts of illnesses and conditions like tumors or cysts and get into things they shouldn't that may get lodged inside them. Ultrasounds are a kind of diagnostic imaging technology that transmits sound waves into your cat's body to produce a picture in real-time of an area of their body.

Veterinary ultrasounds are non-invasive and can be used to diagnose or evaluate problems with your cat's internal organs or check on your cat's pregnancy.

Why Your Veterinarian May Recommend Feline Ultrasound

An ultrasound can help our Seattle vets examine the structure of your cat’s organs so we can discover and identify blockages, tumors, or other problems.

At Aurora Veterinary Hospital, ultrasounds are done in our in-house veterinary diagnostic laboratory. Our team of veterinary specialists uses ultrasounds and other diagnostic tools to provide an accurate diagnosis of your cat’s medical issues, so we can provide your cat with the most effective treatment possible.

Conditions That May Require An Ultrasound

While ultrasound technology isn't always the right tool for every condition, there are a few health issues seen in cats that ultrasound can be particularly helpful in diagnosing and understanding the severity including the following:

Heart Conditions

If your cat has been diagnosed with a heart condition, your vet may refer you to a specialist for a heart ultrasound or echocardiogram to help evaluate the condition and function of your cat's heart and to search for any abnormalities.  

Abnormal Blood or Urine Test Results

If your veterinarian discovers any anomalies or abnormalities in your cat's urine tests or blood samples, they may recommend that your companion get an ultrasound to gain a better picture of their internal organs like their lymph nodes, kidneys, bladder, and more to try and identify what is causing the issue. 

Examination of Soft Tissues

Almost all kinds of soft tissue can be examined in detail thanks to ultrasound imaging technology. Some of the most common areas examined using ultrasound include:

  • Eyes
  • Tendons
  • Ligaments
  • Fetal viability and development
  • Thyroid glands

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

Preparing Your Cat for an Ultrasound

Ultrasounds performed on different areas of your cat's body require different kinds of preparation. Ask your vets for the specific things you need to do to help prepare your cat for its ultrasound. 

You may need to stop your cat from eating and drinking for 8 to 12 hours before the procedure, in particular before abdominal ultrasounds. Your vet will be able to best examine your cat's bladder when it is full so for ultrasounds of that organ, you should ideally not have your cat urinate for 3 to 6 hours before the procedure.  

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

If, after an ultrasound, you kitten needs biopsies, they will require a heavy sedative to anesthetic to help them relax and prevent complications. Your vet will be sure to let you know if the is necessary. 

Findings From Your Cat's Ultrasound Results

Since your veterinarian can perform an ultrasound in real-time, in many cases results are analysed immediately. That said. in some cases, ultrasound images will have to be sent to a veterinary radiologist for examination. If that is the case for your cat's ultrasound results, you may need to wait a few days before receiving the final diagnosis.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding cats. For an accurate diagnosis of your cat's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Does your cat require and ultrasound scan? Contact Aurora Veterinary Hospital to learn more about diagnostic imaging at our Seattle animal hospital.

Looking for a vet in Seattle?

Our vets are passionate about caring for Seattle companion cats and dogs. Get in touch today to request an appointment for your pet.

Contact Us

(206) 525-6666 Contact