• dog;
  • ultrasonography;
  • gastrointestinal tract ultrasonography;
  • stomach anatomy;
  • intestine anatomy;
  • bowel

The normal sonographic appearance of stomach, small bowel, and colon was determined in normal dogs of small, medium, and large breeds. In all dogs studied, the stomach wall ranged from 3 mm to 5 mm in thickness, and the small and large bowel wall ranged from 2 mm to 3 mm in thickness. Peristalsis was routinely observed in the stomach and small bowel, but not in the colon. Ultrasonic identification of five gastrointestinal wall layers corresponding to the mucosal surface, mucosa, submucosa, muscularis propria, and subserosa/serosa was possible. Specific segments of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract were isolated and scanned in a water bath. In one dog, ultrasonic and histologic findings were compared and confirmed the anatomical identification found with ultrasound. Similarities and differences between the ultrasonic appearance of the GI tract of humans and small animals are discussed.