Apr 012012

Photomicrographs of peripheral blood from a dog


Case information

A 7 year old male chihuahua was presented for a 4 day history of inappetence, weakness, and pale mucous membranes. The day before the clinical signs began, the dog had access to the garage which contained various chemicals, but the owner was not aware of anything specific that the dog may have ingested. On presentation, he was bright and alert, with a temperature of 102.8°F, and a heart rate of 160 bpm. He had a grade II/VI systolic heart murmur and pale mucous membranes, but physical exam results were otherwise within normal limits. Blood was drawn for a CBC and chemistry panel. The chemistry panel results were unremarkable. Evaluate the abbreviated CBC results (Table 1) and blood smear images below, and then consider the following questions:

  • Does the anemia appear regenerative based on blood smear review?
  • What red blood cell morphologic abnormalities are present that could help you diagnose the cause of this dog’s anemia?


Table 1: Abbreviated CBC results
Test Result Units Ref Interval
Hct 27 L % 41-60
Hgb 8.6 L g/dL 14.1-20.2
RBC 3.5 L mill/μL 5.7-8.6
MCV 77 H fl 66-76
MCH 25 pg 22-26
MCHC 32 L g/dL 33-36
WBC 8.7 thous/μL 5.7-14.2
Plat 278 thous/μL 186-545


Blood smear from a Chihuahua (1000x, Wright's stain)

Blood smear from a Chihuahua (1000x, Wright’s stain)

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