Canine Elliptocytosis


A benign disease that affects red blood cell (RBC) shape, elliptocytosis affected dogs have elongated, oval or elliptical red blood cells instead of the normal round, "biconcave" shape.

  • Signs and symptoms

    You should not notice any signs at home from this disorder.

    Affected dogs are born with this condition, and the irregular shape may be seen whenever a blood smear is examined by your veterinarian.

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  • Diagnosis

    Examining a blood smear will determine if elliptocytes are present.

  • Treatment

    Elliptocytes can rupture more easily than normally shaped red blood cells. Though this does not normally cause problems in affected dogs, the risk of red blood cell rupture could become more severe if affected dogs have concurrent conditions that compromise cardiovascular health.

  • What to do if your dog is at risk


    • Currently, there is nothing you can do at home to treat this condition.

  • Genetic Information

    This disorder was first described in a mixed breed dog. It is most common in Labrador Retrievers and Chow Chows.

    Canine Elliptocytosis is inherited in an autosomal dominant manner, meaning that one or two copies of the mutation will cause an abnormal RBC shape.

    Gene names:

    SPTB Exon 30 ‐ chr

    Inheritance type:


  • Breeds affected

    This health condition affects the following breeds

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