Can an MRI Scan Help Your Canine?

By April 18 | See Comments

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One thing all pet parents agree on is how much they all love their dogs. We care for them like they’re part of our own families and in some ways, they are. A lot of our most valuable memories are formed while our pooches are around. So it’s rather difficult to not see them as a part of the family. So when our dogs get sick, it’s especially heartbreaking for us. We feel like there’s nothing that we can do and that doesn’t sit well with us. We want to help but the fact that we can’t drives us crazy. At difficult times like these, veterinarians might suggest MRI scans to further explore your dog’s condition.This suggestion might come off as a bit of surprise for you as most people have never actually heard about MRI scans for dogs or animals in general. Rest assured, they do exist and they’re here to help.

What is an MRI?

The abbreviation stands for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Your dog won’t experience any danger or discomfort during an MRI procedure. The MRI uses radio waves and magnetic fields in order to form a clear image of the specific body part that’s being scanned. The MRI is performed after your dog has been given a light anesthetic by your vet. This will render him immobile for a few minutes so the scan can work. He is then put inside a huge magnet which sends radio waves through his body. Once the magnet is turned off, the radio waves also stop, causing your dog’s body to emit the waves which the machine then picks up. The computer uses these radio waves to form an image of your dog’s body.

What is the MRI used to diagnose?

It’s used to diagnose conditions that can’t otherwise be individually tested. Since dogs can’t communicate using language, we have to guess most of what they’re trying to tell us through their actions. While this can be a good strategy, it doesn’t always work in our favor when it comes to diagnosing serious medical conditions. For that we require actual evidence. And that’s where the MRI comes in handy. If your vet suspects that your dog might have a brain tumor, there’s no better way to find out than by using an MRI. Here are a few conditions that are diagnosed using the MRI:

  • Brain conditions like tumors, abscesses, infarcts, and meninges.
  • Spinal disorders like stenosis, nerve root impingements, spinal tumors, and herniated discs.

If your pet is experiencing seizures, the best way to diagnose a condition is by using the MRI machine. It’s non-invasive, safe, and more reliable than most other tests used to determine medical conditions.

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