I first heard of the Canadian Animal Blood Bank when I was speaking to a friend of mine who is a Vet Tech at another clinic out of town. She was telling me about how her dog was a blood donor. I didn’t even realize that this was something that we could do, but I was definitely interested.She told me to get in touch with them, so I emailed right away and had an almost immediate response from Mary – the Laboratory Coordinator at the CABB. She sent me all the information I needed to put together a Donor Clinic at our Hospital. After reviewing the idea with other staff, we decided this was definitely something we wanted to and could do.
We set the date and began trying to get donors. The minimum number for a clinic is 10, and we managed to recruit 11. This was a good number for our first clinic as we were not sure exactly how things would go.
The day of the clinic arrived, and Mary came with all her gear. She used one of the exam rooms and needed the help of 2 staff members for running bloodwork and helping to hold the donors. Our first donor of the day was Maula, and she was amazing. I couldn’t believe how simple the process was and how cooperative our furry friends were.
To begin Mary took a small blood sample from Maula which was used to check her blood type and to run a PCV (Packed Cell Volume) and TP (Total Protein) to make sure she was ok to donate. The results only took minutes, and she was given the clear. Maula was placed on the table on her side and one of our technicians Stevie held her body still while her mom Brittany gave her snuggles, love and encouragement at her head. Mary then placed the needle into her jugular vein and began the collection process. Maula was very calm for the whole procedure. After her donation of 450g of blood was taken, the pressure was held on her jugular vein for a moment and then she was able to get up and get some much-deserved cookies!
We repeated the process for ten other dogs, though one was unable to donate. 4 of the dogs we had that day were Universal Donors – pretty amazing! Each donation has the potential to save three dogs, that means with our ten donors we could save 30 dog’s lives!
We took lots of pictures and videos and will be sharing them on social media in hopes to spread awareness and recruit more donors! We will be holding another clinic in a few months, and we hope to have even more participants. If you are interested in seeing if your dog is eligible to donate, please don’t hesitate to contact us at the clinic!
You can also find more information by checking out the website for the Canadian Animal Blood Bank here -> www.canadiananimalbloodbank.ca
Written by Park Road Veterinary Clinic