Pets often require life-saving blood transfusions; these are often required in an emergency situation at very short notice. We hold a My Vet Blood Donor Register for dogs. This means that we have a list of suitable healthy dogs ready to act as blood donors for critically ill dogs, exactly when they need it most.
We recruit healthy blood donor to our register based on a few key criteria. To be a suitable donor, dogs must:
Suitable donor dogs are invited in for a free assessment including a comprehensive donor health check and blood test prior to recruitment onto register. Just as for humans, dogs have different blood types. In a blood transfusion, it is important that we check the blood type of the donor and the recipient patient, to ensure that they are compatible. This avoids a potentially fatal transfusion-reaction in the recipient patient. As part of the donor health check, we test and log each donor’s blood type in our register. Therefore, in an emergency, we are quickly able to select and call in the most suitable donor for the patient in need.
In an emergency situation, the donor dog will have another blood test immediately prior to donating to ensure they are in good health. Sometimes we give a very light sedation to keep them calm and prevent any movement during blood collection. If they appear nervous or anxious, we would not continue the donation process.
We also only take an appropriate volume of blood from each donor dog, which is calculated according to the donor’s weight before donation. We carefully record each time a dog has performed a life-saving donation as, just as for humans, dogs should only donate blood once every 3 months.
There are no costs associated with volunteering your dog onto our register. However, we may need you to bring your donor dog to our Clayton Le Dale branch, most likely at short notice, for an emergency donation. For this, we will give you goodwill credit onto your pet’s account as a thank-you to you and your pet. By joining the register, you are not under obligation to attend with your dog; we understand that you may have other commitments.
If you think your dog would make a suitable blood donor, and are interested in volunteering their services to help provide life-saving treatment for local pets, please call Cat Long or Gemma Rickard at Clayton Le Dale on 01254 814863 to discuss the register availabilities and registration process.