Pet heart diagnosis

An electrocardiogram (ECG) is a simple, non-invasive test used to detect certain defects in your pet’s heart.

What’s an ECG?

An ECG is a recording of the electrical impulses that are generated when your pet’s heart is beating. Small electrodes are attached to their legs and chest and record electrical activity from the electrocardiograph machine.

Why might my pet need one?

An ECG is used to identify and diagnose many problems with your pet’s heart. Your vet might suggest your pet has as ECG if they suspect a heart murmur, if an x-ray shows evidence of heart enlargement, or if your pet is showing cardiovascular symptoms such as fainting.

An ECG examination will often be combined with chest x-rays or an ultrasound examination of the heart (echocardiography).

How is an ECG done?

An ECG is a simple, non-invasive test and won’t hurt your pet at all. Typically, your pet will be placed in a standing or lying position and electrodes will be attached to the elbows and knees. A conducting gel or liquid is applied to improve electrical conduction between your pet's skin and the electrodes.

Getting an ECG at Medivet

A number of our practices have in-house ECG machines.

If your pet needs a recording, we’ll be able to transport them to the most suitable practice in one of our veterinary ambulances.

If you have any questions about ECGs, contact your local practice who will be happy to help.

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