Hematology is the branch of internal medicine devoted to the diagnosis and treatment of disease of the blood and blood forming elements. Blood is composed of red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets (blood clotting cells) and the liquid (also called plasma) the cells are suspended in as they circulate around the body. Dogs and cats suffer from diseases of all blood cells and deficiencies of proteins contained in the plasma. These proteins are responsible for normal blood coagulation.

Common hematologic diseases of the dog and cat include:

  • Hemophilia, a deficiency of blood clotting proteins
  • Von Willebrand’s disease, the most common canine inherited blood disorder
  • Thrombocytopenia, deficiency of platelets or blood clotting cells
  • Anticoagulant rodenticide intoxication, deficiency of blood clotting proteins
  • Hemolytic anemia, excessive destruction of red blood cells
  • Immune mediated neutropenia, excessive destruction of white blood cells
  • Myelodysplasia/Myeloproliferative disorders, abnormal bone marrow function