Every day, sick and injured dogs need blood transfusions, but unfortunately there are not a lot of national blood banks for animals. With the high demand for blood many larger animal hospitals are developing their own blood banks that local animal hospitals rely on. In honor of Valentine’s Day, Blum Animal Hospital is partnering with Chicago Veterinary Emergency and Specialty Center to host a blood drive to support CVESC’s blood bank.
What are the requirements?
While we would love all dogs to be blood donors, there are certain restrictions on the pets that are allowed to donate blood. Eligible dogs must be over 55 lbs., under seven years old and up-to-date on all vaccines. The dogs must also be on heartworm preventative year-round and not on any other medications other than heartworm and flea/ticket preventatives and supplements.
About blood donation
There are five major blood types for dogs and like humans there is a universal donor. Greyhounds are an ideal breed for blood donation since they have a significantly higher proportion of red blood cells (PCV) than other breeds. Also, 60% of greyhounds are universal donors, which lowers the probability of the recipient dog having a transfusion reaction.
What to expect at the blood drive
The whole process should take around an hour. To ensure the safety of your pet, you will not be able to watch the blood draw but as always, we will take excellent care of your pooch and even treat him or her to a little baby food afterwards as a sweet reward! Side effects are very rare and after the blood has been drawn, it will be tested to make sure it’s safe and compatible for other dogs. Finally, at the end, your dog will receive a little treat bag and you will receive a $25 coupon to thank both of you for your amazing gift.
The blood drive takes place on Sunday, February 15 from 11 am – 2 pm at Blum Animal Hospital. To register your dog for the blood drive, please click here. If you have any further questions about the blood drive, please call and speak with a Veterinary Care Coordinator at: (773) 327-4446.
Written for Blum Animal Hospital by Jackie Sheppard.