Iron deficiency anemia

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Iron is essential to virtually all living organisms and is integral to multiple metabolic functions. The most important function is oxygen transport in hemoglobin. Iron deficiency anemia in dogs and cats is usually caused by chronic blood loss and can be discovered incidentally as animals may have adapted to the anemia. Severe iron deficiency is characterized by a microcytic, hypochromic, potentially severe anemia with a variable regenerative response. Iron metabolism and homeostasis will be reviewed, followed by a discussion of diagnostic testing and therapeutic recommendations for dogs and cats with iron deficiency anemia.




Naigamwaila, D. Z., Webb, J. A., & Giger, U. (2012, March). Iron deficiency anemia. Canadian Veterinary Journal.

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