Factor XII (FXII) is a coagulation protein that initiates surface-activation of the coagulation cascade in vitro. The protein's in vivo role, however, remains poorly defined. Factor XII deficiency, or Hageman trait, is a rare hereditary disorder that is not associated with bleeding, and wide variations in FXII activity (FXII:C) exist among healthy people. While FXII-deficient knockout mice appear to be resistant to arterial thrombosis, human F12 polymorphisms that influence FXII:C have not been associated with thrombotic risk in population surveys. Factor XII deficiency is a naturally occurring hereditary trait in domestic cats. We undertook phenotypic and genotypic analyses of FXII-deficient cats for comparative studies with the human disease counterpart. A retrospective review of feline submissions to our laboratory revealed that FXII deficiency is common in domestic cats, and also present in many different breeds. The trait has a geographic bias toward the Midwestern United States. Clinical history, coagulation assays, and samples for F12 sequencing were obtained from 26 FXII deficient cats. None of the cats had experienced abnormal bleeding and their residual FXII:C was related to F12 mutation number and mutation-type. We found 2 high frequency F12 mutations: an exon 13 missense mutation (c.1631G > C) and an exon 11 deletion mutation (c.1321delC), and additional sequence variants throughout the gene. Factor XII deficiency in pet cat populations provides an animal model system to help clarify the biologic actions and clinical relevance of FXII protein.