October 2017: Vet Blog
Blood donation in pets is something a lot of people may have never heard of or thought about.
Who knew? Dogs can give blood too
Blood donation in pets is something a lot of people may have never heard of or thought about. You may yourself be on the blood donation list for the NHS, but what about pets, what can vets give them in an emergency situation if they have lost a lot of blood?
In the veterinary world there is Pet Blood Bank UK, a charity organization that holds blood donation sessions for dogs to provide a national canine blood bank. They hold sessions at various locations in the UK and have a search on their website so that you can find the next session being held near to you.
To be able to donate, your dog must be fit and healthy with a good temperament and fully vaccinated. They must be aged between 1 and 8 years old and have never travelled abroad. They must weigh more than 25kg and not be on any medication. They will have a health check and suitability check with a vet on the session date before giving blood.
Dogs can donate 3 to 4 times a year; a local anaesthetic cream is used to minimize any discomfort during the session, along with lots of reassurance!
Like human donations, pets need to be blood typed to reduce blood donation reactions in the pet receiving the blood. The Pet blood bank is currently looking for more dogs that are DEA 1.1 negative and have a list on their website of breeds that are more likely to be this type.
Blood transfusions can be life saving for unwell pets, could your dog help? If your dog does not fit these criteria, there are other ways to help the charity such as fundraising or helping with sessions. For more information, take a look at their website: www.petbloodbankuk.org