The most common diagnostic testing we perform is bloodwork. We offer a large number of blood panels and urine tests, both in-house and through IDEXX Reference Laboratories. Regular bloodwork is recommended for pets of all ages and life stages to help us determine their overall health.
When do you recommend bloodwork for pets?
We recommend our more comprehensive geriatric panels for aging pets who are showing symptoms of fever, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, or loss of appetite. Since aging pets are more prone to certain health conditions, this type of testing allows us to diagnose and treat issues early on. Early diagnosis is the best defense against health issues to develop targeted treatment plans. Comprehensive panels are also highly recommended for any pet undergoing surgery to help us detect any signs of bleeding disorders or other unseen abnormalities. If you have questions about your pet's upcoming bloodwork, please contact us at 604-522-3344.
What do bloodwork panels involve?
These panels mainly involve three things: blood chemistries, a complete blood count (CBC) and urinalysis. Blood chemistries or blood serum tests help us evaluate a cat or dog's organ function, electrolyte status, hormone levels, and more. This is especially important in older pets as well as pets who take medication long-term. Getting a complete picture of organ function is also extremely important in helping us determine anesthetic protocols for any pets undergoing general anesthesia. A CBC shows our veterinarians your pets' hydration status and will indicate signs of anemia or bleeding disorders. This portion of the testing is essential for catching signs of infection because there are many indicators of immune system response in your pet. Urinalysis is performed to diagnose and detect traces of urinary tract disease, giving us information about systemic diseases such as liver failure and hemolysis.
How do I decipher my pet's bloodwork?
Unfortunately, since pets can't talk to us when something is wrong, it is up to us to decipher their laboratory results. Specific values are connected to the health of their internal systems and organs. For example, hematocrit measures your pet's volume of red blood cells to detect anemia or their level of dehydration. An increase or decrease of white blood cells can indicate specific infections or diseases. Eosinophils is a white blood cell that reveals an allergic reaction, parasitic condition or other infection. On the other hand, elevated glucose levels can indicate diabetes.