Understanding Your Pet's
Complete Blood Count (CBC) is the
most common blood test performed on pets and people. It gives
information on hydration status, anemia, infection, the blood’s
clotting ability, and ability of the immune system to
respond. This test is often run on pets with fevers, vomiting
diarrhea, weakness, pale gums, or loss of appetite.
measures the percentage of red blood cells to detect anemia and
HGB and MCHC
(Hemoglobin and Mean Corpuscular
Hemoglobin Concentration) are oxygen-carrying pigments of
red blood cells.
WBC (White Blood Cell
Count) measures the cells that fight off infection.
Increases or decreases can indicate certain infections or disease
Grans and L/M
(Granulocytes and lymphocytes /
monocytes) are specific types of white blood cells.
EOS (Eosinophils) are a specific
type of white blood cell that may indicate allergic or parasitic
PLT (Platelets) measures cells
that form blood clots.
These common blood serum tests evaluate organ
function, electrolyte status, hormone levels, and more. These
are important in evaluating pets for a large variety of conditions
and are useful in verifying health before any anesthetic
ALB (Albumin) is a serum protein
that helps evaluate hydration, hemorrhage, and intestinal, liver,
and kidney disease.
ALKP (Alkaline Phosphatase)
elevations may indicate liver damage, Cushing’s disease, cancer and
active bone growth in young pets. This test is important in
ALT (Alanine Aminothansferase) is
a sensitive indicator of active liver damage but does not indicate
AMYL (Amylase) elevations can
indicate pancreatitis or kidney disease.
BUN (Blood Urea Nitrogen)
indicates kidney function. An increased blood level is called
azotemia and can be caused by kidney, liver, and heart disease,
urethral obstruction, shock, and dehydration.
Ca (Calcium) deviations can
indicate a variety of diseases. Tumors, hyperparathyroidism,
kidney disease, and low albumin are just a few of the conditions
that can alter serum calcium.
CHOL (Cholesterol) is used to
supplement diagnosis of hypothyroidism, liver disease, Cushing’s
disease, and diabetes mellitus.
CREA (Creatinine) reveals kidney
function. This test helps distinguish between kidney and
non-kidney causes of elevated BUN.
GLU (Glucose) is blood
sugar. Elevated levels can be due to stress or diabetes
mellitus. Low levels can cause collapse, seizures, or
PHOS (Phosphorus) elevations are
often associated with kidney disease, hyperthyroidism, and bleeding
TBIL (Total Bilirubin) elevations
may indicate liver disease or anemia.
TP (Total Protein) indicates
hydration status and provides additional information about the
liver, kidneys, and infectious diseases.
GLOB (Globulins) is a blood
protein that often increases with chronic inflammation and certain
Na (Sodium) is an electrolyte lost
with vomiting, diarrhea, and kidney and Addison’s disease. It
also helps indicate hydration status.
K (Potassium) is an electrolyte
lost with vomiting, diarrhea, or excessive urination.
Increased levels may indicate kidney failure, Addison’s disease,
dehydration, and urethral obstruction. High levels can lead
to cardiac arrest. Lowered levels can lead to excessive
lethargy and lack of muscle control.
Cl (Chloride) is an electrolyte
often lost with vomiting and Addison’t disease. Elevations
often indicate dehydration.
T4 (Thyroxine) is a thyroid
hormone. Decreased levels often signal hypothyroidism in
dogs, while high levels indicate hyperthyroidism in cats.
Cortisol is a hormone that is
measured when testing for certain disease conditions.