Standard, extended, and geriatric blood tests in dogs and cats: what are they, and when should they be performed? How much does it cost?

Blood tests are the most commonly requested additional tests in dogs and cats. Sometimes a clinical examination is not enough, and the animals are unable to tell what is wrong with them. A blood test can help in this situation. The blood test includes a complete blood count as well as biochemical testing. Biochemical tests provide information about the functioning of internal organs, whereas blood counts provide information about the morphotic elements of blood (erythrocytes, leukocytes, and platelets), their size, and structural features (MCV, MCH, MCHC), as well as the number and percentage of individual types of white blood cells.

This service is available in Pethelp packages. Package prices start at 29 PLN/month.

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What is the range of standard, extended, geriatric, and thyroid profile blood tests?

The standard blood test comprises approximately 7 biochemical tests (albumin, globulin, albumin/globulin ratio, ALT, AP, AST, total protein, glucose, creatinine, urea, depending on the laboratory) and a blood count.

The extended blood test includes approximately 15 biochemical tests (albumin, globulin, albumin/globulin ratio, ALT, AP, AST, inorganic phosphorus, total protein, bilirubin, cholesterol, chlorides, creatinine, glucose, GLDH, urea, potassium, sodium, calcium, depending on the laboratory) and a blood count.

The geriatric blood test includes approximately 25 biochemical tests (albumin, globulin, albumin/globulin ratio, ALT, ALP, AST, total protein, urea, creatinine, glucose, bilirubin, cholesterol, GGTP, amylase, lipase, sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, fT4, T4, K factor), as well as a blood count.

The thyroid profile comprises measurements of thyroxine (T4) and free thyroxine (fT4) levels. The active form of thyroxine is free thyroxine, and determining both forms is very important in the diagnosis of thyroid problems.

When should I perform a blood test on my cat or dog?

These tests should be performed at least once a year on our pets and every six months on senior animals. If you are concerned about your pet's behavior or appearance, consult a veterinarian, who will assess whether more tests are required. We can use preventative blood tests to diagnose disorders of the liver, kidneys, pancreas, spleen, and other organs, as well as track the progress of treatment in the event of disease.

A geriatric profile is often performed on animals over the age of eight; however, there are no contraindications to conducting it on younger animals if the veterinarian believes it is necessary.

What is the technique for collecting animal blood samples?

A veterinarian or technician collects the samples. The owner is usually asked to hold the animal. The vet or technician will show you how to hold your pet properly so that the collection procedure is as quick and stress-free as possible. Blood is typically drawn from the front or back paw, and less frequently from the neck. The puncture site will be shaved to keep the collection clean and the blood vessels more visible. Then a tourniquet will be applied to improve vessel filling, and blood will be collected, most commonly by inserting a needle into a vein. Following the collection, a pressure dressing will be applied and should be removed within 10–15 minutes. After the blood collection, reward your pet with his favorite treat.

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