Why do our pets need blood tests?
Blood tests are a simple yet important procedure that can be carried out quickly and often during a consultation. In preparation, your veterinarian will clip a small amount of hair from your pet's arm or neck and clean the area with an alcoholic swab. A small amount of blood is then collected from one of these areas, placed into special tubes and processed either in the clinic or sent to a laboratory.
So, why do our pets require blood tests?
Pets require blood test for a number of reasons.
- They are particularly important for the early detection of disease and illness
- They help to identify underlying health issues that cannot be identified by the naked eye or during a physical examination if your pet is unwell
- They can be used to monitor the response of your pet to treatment of health issues
In addition to this, Greencross Vets recommended that pets have a blood test performed prior to the administration of a general anaesthetic. A pre-anaesthetic blood test provides accurate and timely information about the health status of your pet assisting your veterinary team to identify problems that may cause complications during your pet's anaesthetic and surgical procedure.
While six monthly wellness health checks are strongly recommended, a thorough physical exam alone does not determine how our pet's internal organs are functioning. An annual blood test is therefore very important in your pet's preventative health care plan along with their vaccinations and other preventative health care treatments.
The organs tested in the most common series of blood tests include the liver and kidneys. In addition to this, certain enzymes are tested which can indicate muscle damage and generalised inflammation. Your pet's red and white blood cells are also tested which assist the veterinarian in assessing your pet’s hydration status, red cell count (in case of anaemia), inflammation or infection and how your pet's immune system is reacting to them.
Blood testing on pets is very similar if not the same to those performed on you when you visit your doctor, and they are just as important to us as they are for our beloved pets.
To learn more about blood tests and how they can benefit your pet’s health and wellbeing, contact your local Greencross Vets team today.