Veterinarians Need Dog Blood Donors 9/6/13
CBS 7 News
Donating blood can be a life-saving act, but many times blood banks find their supplies dwindling and donors few and far between. It isn't a problem that just impacts humans. Veterinarians face the exact same issue and it could mean the difference between life and death for dogs.
The West Texas Emergency Veterinary Clinic technically the first blood bank in the Permian Basin that caters specifically to dogs and cats and the clinic is in desperate need of consistent donors.
“My own dog that stays here with me is held here for emergencies just in case we need blood in the middle of the night and we don't have it,” says Dr. Ann Wills from WTEVC.
But even that has its limits.
"Dog can only, dogs only should "
Which is why Dr. Wills and her four partners opened their clinic and the new blood bank in March.
So far only 5 dogs are a consistent source of blood and they all belong to the employees.
"Blood has a shelf life of 30 days," she says.
That's why the clinic need is in desperate need of pet owners who are willing to volunteer their dogs for their donor program. Otherwise the clinic has to turn to other supplies but it can be extremely expensive.
When supplies get really low the clinic has had to turn to a blood bank in Colorado.
"On the Tuesday after Labor Day we called to get blood and they said it couldn't get here until Friday or Monday," commented Dr. Wills. She says even one unit of blood can save a life.
Below is a list of requirements and contact information on how you can help:
1) Call 432-614-9204 and ask for Laura Carpenter to set up a consultation meeting
2) Schedule a physical for your dog to run blood work and find blood type
3) Schedule a time to donate:
a. The dog will be sedated
b. The veterinarians will clip a piece of hair on the side of the neck to make sure the procedure is sterile
c. The dog will be reverse-sedated
4) Come back 3 months later