Recent history of estrus, clinical signs and abdominal swelling and pain on palpation may be sufficient. However, blood tests give an indication of the health status and the anaethetic risks using evidence-based medicine in case the dog dies during or after surgery.
TWO RECENT CASES as example
Both female dogs around 4 years old.
Date: Jul 16, 2012
CKC with closed pyometra
Estrus said to be less than 1 month ago.
Goes home 5 days after surgery as she needed IV drips. Wagged tail on Day 3.
Womb looks about to rupture. It was extremely swollen and has petechial haemorrahges. See images
However good news. Went home.
Hb 11.6 (12-18)
RBC 4.9 (5.5-8.5)
Platelets 11 (200-500)
PCV 0.34 (0.37-0.55)
Total WCC 127 (6-17)
Blood cells show degenerative changes ? age/transport. Several abnormal cells seen. No platelet clumps seen.
NOTES: Actually degenerative cells due to toxins of bacterial infection in the uterus.
Compare to chihuahua with open pyometra
SGOT/AST 117 (<81)
Urea 36 (4.2-6.3)
Creatinine 174 (89-177) - normal
No X-ray though advised.
Chihuahua. Consulted vet early when dog was not eating and was lethargic but discharge of pus from vagina for around 10 days.
Goes home 3 days after surgery as she was more alert than the CKC, growling all the time.
X-ray showed enlarged uterus (arrows compared to image of uterus) but some vets may not agree with me.
Hb 17 (12-18)
RBC 7.2 (5.5-8.5)
Platelets 208 (200-500)
PCV 0.49 (0.37-0.55)
Total WCC 6.2 (6-17) N=75%
SGOT/AST 115 (<81)
Urea 3.7 (4.2-6.3)
Creatinine 53 (89-177)