• encephalopathy;
  • ketonuria;
  • metabolic acidosis;
  • organic aciduria


Objective: To describe a case of severe metabolic acidosis and encephalopathy secondary to cobalamin (Cbl) deficiency in a young cat.

Case summary: A 4-year-old spayed female domestic short hair cat weighing 2.5 kg, presented with a 2-day history of neurological signs referable to the cerebrum. The cat was evaluated for similar episodes twice before, however, no definitive diagnosis was made for either visit. On presentation the cat was minimally responsive and had a metabolic acidosis and ketonuria with no apparent reason, such as lactic acidosis or diabetic ketoacidosis. The patient was diagnosed postmortem with an organic acidemia secondary to low Cbl levels.

New or unique information provided: The purpose of this report is to alert emergency clinicians to be suspicious of an organic acidemia in any case of metabolic acidosis and ketonuria that cannot be explained. Early identification of inherited organic acidemias in domestic animals may allow prompt and appropriate treatment of these conditions.