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Keywords:

  • Clotting times;
  • D-Dimers;
  • Donkeys;
  • Equid;
  • Fibrinogen degradation products

Background: Coagulation disorders are frequently diagnosed, especially in hospitalized equidae, and result in increased morbidity and mortality. However, hemostatic reference intervals have not been established for donkeys yet.

Objectives: To determine whether the most common coagulation parameters used in equine practice are different between healthy donkeys and horses.

Animals: Thirty-eight healthy donkeys and 29 healthy horses.

Methods: Blood samples were collected to assess both coagulation and fibrinolytic systems by determination of platelet count, fibrinogen concentration, clotting times (prothrombin time [PT] and activated partial thromboplastin time [aPTT]), fibrin degradation products (FDP) and D-Dimer concentrations.

Results: PT and aPTT in donkeys were significantly (P < .05) shorter than those of horses. In contrast, FDP and D-Dimer concentrations were significantly (P < .05) higher in donkeys than in horses.

Conclusions and Clinical Importance: The coagulation parameters most commonly determined in equine practice are different in donkeys compared with horses. Thus, the use of normal reference ranges reported previously for healthy horses in donkeys might lead to a misdiagnosis of coagulopathy in healthy donkeys, and unnecessary treatments in sick donkeys. This is the first report of normal coagulation profile results in donkeys, and further studies are warranted to elucidate the physiological mechanisms of the differences observed between donkeys and horses.