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Objectives: To measure the D-dimer concentrations in both healthy dogs and dogs with and without evidence of thromboembolic disease/disseminated intravascular coagulation using a “Point-of-Care” test.

Methods: Sixty-seven clinical cases and 26 healthy dogs were included in this retrospective study. D-dimer was measured using the NycoCard D-dimer test. Clinical conditions were categorised based on clinical findings, laboratory results, imaging, cytology, histopathology, necropsy or a combination of these tests.

Results: There were no dogs for which the NycoCard D-dimer test did not produce a result. The D-dimer range in clinically healthy dogs was 0·1 to 0·5 mg/l (median 0·2 mg/l). In eight of nine cases with thromboembolic disease/disseminated intravascular coagulation and 43 of 58 of the cases without thromboembolic disease/disseminated intravascular coagulation , the D-dimer concentrations were greater than those of healthy dogs.

Clinical Significance: The NycoCard D-dimer test card required no specialised equipment and could therefore facilitate rapid screening for thromboembolic disease/disseminated intravascular coagulation in first opinion practice. Elevations in D-dimer concentration can be found in a number of clinical conditions apart from thromboembolic disease/disseminated intravascular coagulation and should not therefore be used as the sole basis of diagnosis. D-dimer may be considered a good screening test for thromboembolic disease/disseminated intravascular coagulation as only one case with histopathological evidence of thromboembolic disease/disseminated intravascular coagulation had a D-dimer concentration in the range seen in healthy dogs.