If you are a dog owner, the idea that your dog will ever suffer a major illness or injury is likely heartbreaking. However, just like with people, things happen and sometimes dogs have major health issues. Sometimes, they even need CT scans. You may not have known that CT scans for animals even existed until now and that is perfectly normal. However, it is also important to know some of the circumstances in which your veterinarian may recommend a CT scan for animals. That way, you can be prepared for the possibility if your dog suffers from one or more of these health issues in their lifetime.
Fractures or Bone Breaks
One of the reasons your dog may need a CT scan is if they have a fracture or break in one of their bones. Fractures especially can sometimes be tough to see or gauge on 2-D imaging like x-rays.
Sometimes veterinarians need a more comprehensive look at the bone to determine the severity of a break or fracture and what course of action will be necessary to treat the injury. CT scans can give them a more complete picture because CT images are able to show tissue density, meaning they can see how deep a fracture goes and how severe a break in the bone is.
If your veterinarian discovers or suspects that your dog has a tumor in their body, they may request a CT scan for that area of the body. The reason for a CT scan over an x-ray of tumors is that a CT scan can give a much more detailed picture of the size, density, and complexity of a tumor.
For example, an x-ray will just show that there is a mass that shouldn't be there. A CT scan will show how dense the tissue is and can better show if there are blood vessels involved in the tumor (wrapped around or feeding the tumor) and the like.
Getting a CT Scan can help determine whether surgery is possible for the tumor or if radiation therapy to shrink the tumor may instead be the necessary course of treatment first. This can save your veterinarian time and effort so that they do not needlessly go in for surgery when the tumor is not safely operable.
Now that you know a few of the reasons that your dog may need a CT scan, you can be sure that you are prepared for the process if your dog ever has one of these health issues.