Understanding Dog Blood Test Results


Understanding Dog Blood Test Results

Blood screening for disease is a routine procedure in both human and veterinary medicine.

A blood screen is the chemical and physical analysis of a small sample of blood. This analysis gives us a good overview of your dog’s overall health status.

With many disease processes, we will see subtle changes in the blood screen even before symptoms of the disease become evident.

When these changes can be detected early, we can often make changes in the diet or institute medications that will yield a longer, healthier life for your dog.

Periodic blood screens are recommended, especially for older animals, as part of a routine health check.

A pre-anesthetic blood screen may also be suggested by your veterinarian for any animal who will be undergoing anesthesia and/or sedation. This allows your veterinarian to more completely ensure that your dog is healthy and can safely undergo his/her procedure.

Blood screening can frequently detect problems that would make anesthesia or sedation dangerous for your dog. Abnormal results may indicate a need to change the anesthetic protocol or even delay anesthesia or sedation until the problem is resolved.

Problems can be and are detected in animals of all ages, even young animals. However, as your dog ages, the chance of organ dysfunction increases also.


Understanding Dog Blood Test Results

Understanding Dog Blood Test Results
Understanding Dog Blood Test Results

Your dog’s blood screen may include all or some of the tests listed below (the organs examined with each test are also listed):

  1. COMPLETE BLOOD COUNT: Overall Body Condition (can provide evidence of anemia, infections, or inflammation)
  2. BLOOD UREA NITROGEN (BUN): Kidney Function.
  3. CREATININE: Kidney Function.
  4. SGPT: Liver Function
  5. ALKALINE PHOSPHATASE: Liver Function.
  6. BILIRUBIN: Liver Function.
  7. BLOOD SUGAR: Pancreas Function (Possibility of Diabetes
  8. CALCIUM: Bone Content.
  9. TOTAL PROTEIN: Kidney, Liver, Intestinal Disease
  10. ALBUMIN: Kidney, Liver, Intestinal Disease
  11. AMYLASE: Pancreatic Disease, Kidney Disease
  12. PHOSPHORUS: Electrolyte Balance
  13. SODIUM: Electrolyte Balance
  14. POTASSIUM: Electrolyte Balance
  15. GLOBULIN: Intestinal Disease, Immune Function (can indicate the presence of antibodies)
  16. T4: Thyroid function
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