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X-Rays for Dogs

Diagnostic imaging allows our vets to gain valuable insight into the internal functions and structure of your pet. Here, our Arlington vets talk about why your dog may need an X-ray, what to expect during the appointment, as well as some information about safety and cost.

Why does your dog need an X-ray?

Regarding human and veterinary healthcare, X-rays are one of the most frequently used and helpful diagnostic tools. X-rays allow us the opportunity to produce a visual representation of your dog's internal structures using a non-invasive technique.

X-rays can detect pregnancy, broken bones, tumors, enlarged organs, foreign objects, and more. In cases where a detailed view of tissues, ligaments, and organs can't be obtained with X-ray technology other diagnostic imaging techniques such as an MRI and Ultrasound may be more beneficial.

Preparing for Your Dog's X-Ray Appointment

Often an X-ray is done when the animal is brought in to have an issue looked at by the vet or for another diagnostic test. For that reason, no specific preparation is required. Your vet will examine your pet, then if an X-ray is required, they will take some time to explain the procedure and what they will be looking for.


In some situations, sedation will be needed to take a clear X-ray. If your dog is calm, isn't suffering from too much pain, and can lie down in a comfortable position while your vet is taking the X-ray, sedation won't be required.

But, your vet will recommend sedation if your dog is in pain, anxious, or won't settle down. Having your dog sedated can also ensure that they are completely relaxed, allowing for a clearer image to be produced.

Safety of X-Rays for Dogs

Radiography is safe, painless, and non-invasive. It uses only very low doses of radiation. Since the level of radiation exposure needed to conduct X-rays is very low, it's even safe to take X-rays of pregnant dogs.

If you're concerned about the use of X-ray technology or the potential sedation required, speak with your veterinarian. They will help give you an understanding of the risks versus the benefits in your dog's particular case, so you can decide whether you want your dog to undergo the procedure.

Cost of a Dog X-Ray

If your dog needs an X-ray, the cost will vary depending on many different factors including the area being X-rayed, your dog's size, if sedation was used, your location, the vet you are seeing, and more. Your vet can provide you with an estimate for the cost of the X-ray before moving forward with the procedure.

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

Do you have more questions about what to expect during your dog's upcoming X-ray? Contact our Arlington vets for more information.

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Crossroads Animal Clinic is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Arlington companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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