Clotting Deficiency (Liver Related) in Cats

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Coagulopathy of Liver Disease in Cats

The liver is vital for the synthesis of anticoagulant, coagulation, and fibrinolytic proteins. In fact, only five blood clotting factors are not produced there. Therefore, liver diseases that cause clotting issues in cats can be very serious and sometimes life-threatening.

Symptoms and Types

  • Black feces due to digested blood (melena)
  • Bright red blood in the feces (hematochezia)
  • Vomiting or spitting up blood (hematemesis)
  • Prolonged bleeding after drawing blood, urine, or from recent surgical wounds
  • Spontaneous bruising (rare)


The causes of coagulopathy of liver disease are abundant, including:

  • Severe liver failure
  • Acute viral liver disease
  • Cirrhosis (hardening and shrinking of the liver with loss of functional tissue)
  • Extrahepatic bile duct obstruction (EHBDO)
  • Vitamin K deficiency linked to severe intra- or extrahepatic cholestasis (blockage of the bile ducts) or steatorrhea (fat in the feces due to trouble digesting fat since enzymes the liver makes are lacking).
  • Portosystemic Vascular Anomaly (PSVA), causing insufficient blood flow to the liver


You will need to give a thorough history of your cat’s health, including the onset and nature of the symptoms, to the veterinarian. He or she will then perform a complete physical examination as well a biochemistry profile, urinalysis, complete blood count (CBC), and electrolyte panel.

Hemostatic tests like prolonged activated partial thromboplastin time (APTT), activated clotting time (ACT), prothrombin time (PT), thrombin clotting time (TCT), and Proteins invoked by Vitamin K Absence (PIVKA) are useful for measuring the severity of the cat’s inability to clot normally. Tests can also be performed to detect low coagulation/anticoagulant factor (antithrombin (AT) and protein (C) activity. X-rays, meanwhile, are used to identify liver abnormalities, fluid in the abdomen, abnormal intestinal motility and thickening in affected areas.

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The term for black feces that has blood in it


A cell that aids in clotting


An in-depth examination of the properties of urine; used to determine the presence or absence of illness


Extreme loss of blood


One of the proteins in plasma used for clotting


The act of throwing up blood


The collection of fluid in the peritoneal cavity.


The fluid created by the liver that helps food in the stomach to be digested.


A passage in the body with walls


Term used to refer to any drug that is used to slow down or stop the clotting of blood for medical purposes.


Passing stool with blood in it

Courtesy of Original Article