I just saw on iHeartDogs a very inspiring article about how everyday family pets are heroically saving the lives of their fellow Canines throughout the entire country. In the U.S, there is over 2700 Blood Banks devoted to Humans, whilst there is only 10 for Pets.
There are 8 Canine Blood Types, although only one is considered a “universal donor”.
“Each donor program’s criteria varies slightly, but overall they are looking for healthy adult dogs weighing at least 50 pounds who are up to date on vaccines and laid back at the vet’s office. Dogs who meet these basic criteria are then examined by a veterinarian, blood typed, tested for an array of diseases, and assessed on how they handle the visit.
If a dog is accepted as a donor, he or she will be asked to provide blood once every 4 – 8 weeks depending on the program. The process takes about 30 minutes, during which the donor pooch is showered with affection by the staff. They may offer kisses, belly rubs or a favorite treat to take their mind off the slight discomfort. Afterwards, it’s hugs, kisses, cheers and plenty of snacks for the generous hero!”
The Doggy Blood Donation process takes roughly 30 minutes and every donation has the possibility of saving up to 4 injured pooches.
“The blood is centrifuged and broken down into red blood cells, which last about 6 weeks when properly stored, and plasma, which can last for several years if frozen. The precious, life-saving samples are then available to be shipped to any veterinarian who needs them. Emergency and specialty practices tend to keep fresh blood on hand, while smaller offices order or borrow as needed from the donation center or emergency clinic nearest them.
The benefits of owning a blood donor dog include complimentary veterinary exams, blood work, vaccines, microchipping, and, of course, the wonderful feeling of knowing your dog is saving other pups’ lives! Many donation centers send out periodic newsletters detailing the stories of the pets saved by donor blood. This allows families to see the sweet faces of the dogs they are helping.”
Image courtesy of: Jon in Thailand
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