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Eosinophilia refers to an increase in the number of eosinophils present in the blood or tissues. This form of leucocytosis can be associated with parasitism or hypersensitivity reactions.

Hypersensitivity Reactions

  • Flea bite hypersensivity is the most common cause of eosinophilia in cats and it may occur in animals with signs of miliary dermatitis. Food hypersensitivity reactions and atopic dermatitis may also be variably associated with eosinophilia.
  • Feline eosinophilic granuloma complex may be associated with blood or tissue eosinophilia. The eosinophilic ulcer form is rarely associated with systemic changes whereas eosinophilia is a near constant feature of the eosinophilic plaque. The linear granuloma is variably associated with blood eosinophilia.
  • Feline hypereosinophilic syndrome is a rare cause of eosinophilia that is associated with infiltration of various organs, particularly the liver and spleen, by eosinophils.
  • Eosinophilic enteritis is a form of infiltrative enteritis which may be focal or diffuse. The latter form of disease is especially common in German Shepherd dogs as an idiopathic complex that may be accompanied by blood eosinophilia. The focal form may be associated with intestinal parasite infection. Multisystemic Eosinophilic Enteritis and Dermatitis (MEED), a rare form of equine inflammatory bowel disease may also be associated with blood eosinophilia.
  • Feline asthma syndrome, canine pulmonary infiltration with eosinophils (PIE) and equine eosinophilic pulmonary granulomas may all be associated with blood eosinophilia.

Parasite Infection

Both endo- and ecto-parasite infections may result in blood eosinophilia, in particular:


  • Hypoadrenocorticism or Addison's disease may be associated with eosinophilia, a feature that may help to differentiate it from other diseases as such severely ill animals would usually be expected to have a stress leucogram.
  • Eosinophilia may occur in pregnant small animals.
  • German shepherd dogs are particularly prone to the development of eosinophilia and this may or may not be related to the presence of concurrent enteritis.
  • The rare form of eosinophilic chronic myeloid leukaemia may result in the abnormally high production of eosinophils.

Literature Search

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Eosinophilia publications

Eosinophilia in dogs publications

Eosinophilia in cats publications

Eosinophilia in horses publications