Ultrasound or X-ray - which one and when?
Ultrasound is the most effective method of pregnancy diagnosis and provides breeders with the earliest diagnosis (as early as 18 days after conception) as well as the ability to determine approximate puppy count and fetal viability. We usually recommend that appointments for pregnancy diagnosis be scheduled approximately 23-26 days after the last breeding in order to most accurately determine puppy count. If ovulation timing information is available, these dates can easily be defined and breeders can feel comfortable scheduling their appointments at the appropriate time. We also offer a complimentary recheck ultrasound exam for pregnancy diagnosis which can be very useful in cases where fetal sac viability is questionable early on and resorption is likely. We want you to feel comfortable with your particular bitch's pregnancy and litter size, and we are committed to spending a few extra minutes helping you obtain that information.
An x-ray is a wonderful tool that is particularly useful during the last 7-10 days of pregnancy when fetal calcification is greatest, providing optimal visualization of fetal structures as well as an opportunity to count the number of puppies. It's also a great way to identify any abnormalities that may cause complications during whelping such as oversized puppies or fetal deformities. Positioning of the fetuses in the uterus can also be determined and sometimes help owners prepare for elective C-sections when problems such as transverse presentations are detected.