Low Blood Albumin in Dogs

Albumin is a small protein released by the liver. This protein holds water in the blood cells, and is important for blood balance and the integrity of the blood vessel walls. Hypoalbuminemia is a condition that refers to abnormally low levels of albumin in the body. It is a specific form of hypoproteinemia (low protein level in blood).

Since albumin functions to hold water within blood vessels, low levels of this important protein in the blood may allow fluids to escape and collect in the body, causing abdominal distention (ascites), pulmonary edema (fluid build-up within the lungs), and/ or swelling of the extremities, particularly the lower portions of the limbs and the underside of the chest. 

It's role in repair and growth of tissues and transportation of essential fatty acids (fat) from adipose tissue to muscle tissue makes albumin vitally important . It also promotes transportation of hormones, drugs and other substances through blood. It buffers the blood pH, regulates osmosis, and it binds to calcium ions.


Low levels albumin may allow fluid build up in the body which can manifest as ascites (abominal distention),pulmonary edema, limb swelling, generalized swelling, breathing difficulty, and diarrhea and/or vomiting. 


Leave a Comment