When Do Dogs Need Blood Testing?

Knowing the appropriate time to take your dog for blood testing can be confusing. Every pet owner wants to ensure they focus on health as much as possible. Your dog may not tell you they are unwell, so being on top of things is essential. 

Blood tests are among the diagnostic measures for checking health status. They help provide timely and accurate health information about your dog. But it is essential to understand when to take them for their blood test.

Understanding Blood Testing for Dogs

Blood testing for dogs happens when a veterinarian collects and examines a blood sample. The process includes checking the complete blood count (CBC). It also analyzes blood chemistries to study the chemical components in the blood. 

A CBC for your dog quantifies and identifies platelets, red blood cells, and white blood cells in the sample of their blood sample. It analyzes the condition and shape of the cells for functionality and health. A CBC helps with information about the immune system from the white blood cells. It also informs about oxygen-carrying capacity from the red blood cells.

What Else Can Your Veterinarian Identify During Blood Tests?

Blood testing also identifies:

  • Digestive enzymes.

  • Cholesterol.

  • Proteins.

  • Glucose.

  • Electrolytes.

  • Endocrine levels.

How to Get a Blood Test

Getting blood tests is a simple process. It can happen during your regular consultation with the vet. Your veterinarian will begin by clipping hair from your dog’s neck or limb. The area of interest becomes sterilized using an alcohol swab. 

Your veterinarian will collect a small amount of blood using a syringe needle then place it in special tubes. The collected sample gets processed further in an external laboratory or on-site. Your dog may not feel the pain of the needle, and the process will be over by the time they realize what is happening.

Benefits of Blood Testing Your Dog

The importance of getting your dog blood tested is to ensure they are healthy. Your veterinarian can assess the overall health of your dog through blood work. Blood tests reveal hidden health dangers before they surface physically.

The results from the bloodwork should give information about your dog’s anemia infection and immune system response. Your veterinarian will also get information about hydration status and blood clotting ability.

When Your Dog Needs Blood Testing

  • First Visit at the Veterinarian

It is ideal to have your dog’s first blood test as a puppy. Doing so will help your veterinarian get a baseline for reference whenever treating your pet.


  • Annual Wellness Exams

Your veterinarian is likely to recommend annual blood work. Doing so allows them to spot internal changes in your dog that are not obvious physically.


  •  Pre-surgical Tests

Veterinarians take precautions before pet surgical procedures. Doing blood testing before surgery determines the appropriate dose of anesthesia to administer. Blood test results also show the level of platelets to determine whether there is a risk of blood clotting.


  • Senior Wellness Exam

Dog blood tests are appropriate for senior, geriatric, and mature dogs as part of their wellness exams. Dogs have a shorter lifespan than human beings. Doing blood tests helps veterinarians keep track of their health and detect issues that pose a risk to their health.

For more about blood testing for dogs, visit The Animal Hospital at our office in Slingerlands, New York. You can also call (518) 456-0852 to book an appointment today.

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