Slide 1

Diagnostic tree for anaemia in cattle
McFadden AMJ, Thompson J, Love M.
Anaemia present and
clinical signs including:
lethargy / depression,
pale/white/jaundiced mucous
membranes, fever, possible
Regenerative anaemia
Non regenerative anaemia
1. Is Theileria present on a blood smear or detected by PCR?
1. Is Theileria present on a blood smear or detected by PCR?
2. Is there evidence of haemorrhage?
2. Are cattle in good condition?
Trauma or haemorrhage into the body cavities and lungs?.
(Cu ,B12, Se deficiency; Check levels),
3. Are cattle acutely affected with signs of haemolytic anaemia?
Renal disease, Liver disease (Is it a facial eczema or liver fluke area; serum
biochemistry/faecal egg test),
Cu toxicity (Kidney copper levels most diagnostic or check serum/liver levels),
post parturient haemoglobinuria (Low PO4; check levels), Check ration (Onions?
Brassicas? Heinz bodies present on the blood smear?),
Chronic disease (Johnes, parasitism).
3. Are only young animals affected?
Leptospirosis (vaccinated? High titres or rising titres?; Pomona mostly affects calves
rather than adults).
Genetic disorders (e.g. congenital dyserythropoiesis in Polled Herefords and Murray Grey
calves; often apparent from six weeks of age).
Acute facial eczema (some animals may have haemoglobinuria; check liver enzymes).
Coccidiosis (mild to moderate diarrhoea and weight loss; oocysts in faces)
Bacillary haemoglobinuria
4. Are any metabolic disorders present?
(Germination of Clostridium hemolyticum spores secondary to liver damage e.g. from
migrating liver fluke; very rare).
(Mg deficiency “Taranaki anaemia”).
4. Is more than one animal affected?
If only one animal, Autoimmune haemolytic anaemia? (drugs administered recently?;
very rare).
5. Is there a heavy burden of ticks present ?
Particularly in calves check around the neck on white patches.
6.Are there other agents or conditions or a history suggestive of secondary
BVD Ag test on affected animal (+/-Pooled herd/mob antibody test), Management
stress through weaning or calving etc, Movement of cattle to or from Northland.