Do cats have blood types?

Yes, cats have blood types.

Blood groups are determined by the presence or absence of certain antigens (proteins or sugars) found on the red blood cell membrane. Cats have four known blood types: A, B, AB, and mic. Type A is the most common, with about 99% of cats in the United States being Type A. Certain breeds have a higher prevalence of Type B. Type AB is rare. There are no universal donors among cats, because they naturally have antibodies against the blood group antigen that they lack. Patients are typed to aid in the matching of donors and recipients and to identify breeding pairs potentially at risk of causing hemolytic anemia in their offspring. Type B queens have especially strong anti-A antibodies. If they have kittens that inherit Type A from the tom, the antibody goes to the kittens in the colostrum (first milk) and destroys red blood cells in the kitten.

An animal’s blood group is determined by measuring the reaction of a small sample of blood to certain antibodies. The blood group must be determined before a blood transfusion can be safely provided. In addition, a test called crossmatching is also necessary to ensure safe transfusions. In this test, specific components of donor blood are combined with components of the patient’s blood prior to a transfusion to ensure that a reaction does not occur. Even the first incompatible transfusion results in the rapid destruction of the transfused cells.

In summary, cats have four known blood types: A, B, AB, and mic. Blood typing and crossmatching are necessary to ensure safe transfusions.

(1) Blood Groups and Blood Transfusions in Cats – Cat Owners – Merck ….
(2) Cat Blood Types: Do You Know Your Cat’s Blood Type? – CatTime.
(3) Feline blood types: What you need to know and why (Proceedings) – dvm360.

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