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Dr. Andy
Dr. Andy, Medical Director
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 30067
Experience:  UC Davis graduate, emphasis in dermatology, internal medicine, pain management
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What causes High Platelet Counts in a dog. For I have been

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What causes High Platelet Counts in a dog. For I have been having a Basic Wellness Screen Super Chem done about every 4 months on my Shih Tzu, and I have managed to get all of the areas within normal level but the Platelet Count and the ALT.   They continue to get higher. I have looked all over the internet and I cannot find what causes a high platelet count. I had the SuperChem/CBC Test done on 3/5/10 and his ALT was 232 (h) and his Platelet Count was 468 (h) and then I had the same tests done on 12/01/09 and his ALT was 228 (h) and his Bun/Creatinine was 30 (h) and his Platelet Count was 451 (h). He has never been sick and he acts just fine. I just lost one of my other shih tzu's this past October, 2009 because of liver failure which resulted in his kidney's shutting down and before losing him, I had his SuperChem/CBC test done every 3 months and from 6-5-08 til 2 days before he passed, his ALT was high everytime and his platelet count was high every time. He died just 1 day before his 13th Birthday and he was a Shih Tzu. I wanted to keep a close watch on my 6 year shih tzu since then because I want to be able to do something early if there is something that is happening like kidney or liver disease. What do you think it sounds like with these two levels in my 6 year shih tzu.
There can be a huge range in platelet counts, with an above average normal still being completely fine.
Elevated platelets are rarely a concern.
Causes for increase would be due to increased release from the spleen from epinephrine release in the body or during exercise.
Platelets counts can also increase during times of sudden or acute blood loss, iron deficiency, trauma, cancer, or Cushing's disease. For me, it would have to be a persistent platelet count over at least 600,000 before I even bat an eye at it.

Now, the ALT increase is of concern. The ALT is a liver enzyme that can indicate liver damage.
I would consider discussing with your vet doing a abdominal ultrasound to get a better look at the liver, as well as, a bile acids test can be performed to assess the "function" of the liver. Liver enzymes on a blood test only tell about liver damage, not function.

Good Luck
Dr. Andy
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