Dogs need blood too, ya know!

We all see advertisements on the television asking for people to donate blood. But did you know that animals can need blood donations too!

Bruno came into us on the 4th of May, he was panting a lot and was very down in himself. This seemed to have happened very quickly and the owner had no idea what could have happened. The vet asked a few questions about Bruno and the owner had mentioned that recently he had laid down some rat poison, and that Bruno might have eaten it.

He was admitted into the hospital for observation.

While he was with us he started to bleed from his nose and coughing up blood. One of our nurses noticed that the blood was not clotting. This is how rat poison works, it contains an anti-clotting factor which prevents the blood from clotting. Clotting is the bodies natural way to stop bleeding. If the blood is prevented from clotting the animal will bleed continuously and will pass away if medical treatment is not given.

When we noticed this about Bruno’s blood we started to give him Vitamin K which help to bring back the clotting factor in blood. But as Bruno had lost a significant amount of blood and it needed to be replaced.

Luckily we have a list of clients who we are able to call in an emergency and who are willing to allow their pets to be blood donors. Skye Fitzpatrick is one of these willing dogs!

Luckily Skye’s owner Jen, was able to being him straight to the surgery where we sedated him so he was relaxed and where able to easily take one pint of blood from him and was then tranfused to Bruno.

Dogs and cats can receive one donation that is not matched, i.e a dog that is blood type A can give to a dog that is blood type O, but cats cannot give blood to dogs and visa versa. Any further blood donations have to be matched.

Bruno stayed  with us for a few days so we could monitor him for any reactions to the blood transfusion, to watch his blood levels and keep him on Vitamin K.

But as you can see for the picture he was a very happy dog going home!

Bruno was in with us recently and he is doing great and his owners now know the importance of making sure any poisons are laid properly and away from areas which are occupied by pets!

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