With Animal Blood Bank services, our veterinarians at Southwest Florida Veterinary Specialists can treat patients quickly and safely with blood transfusions collected from volunteers.
What is Animal Blood Bank?
What would you do if your beloved pet was injured in an accident, needed life-saving surgery or became seriously ill?
We now consider our pets members of the family and veterinary specialty services have adapted to reflect this. There is a dramatic increase in demand for transfusion therapy to treat many diseases and injuries, and we need your help.
Your pet can help save the lives of other beloved pets by becoming a blood donor hero for animals with critical illnesses, traumatic blood loss, clotting problems and more. Our knowledgeable team would be happy to answer your questions.
When do veterinarians need blood products?
While critical illnesses and accidents involving traumatic blood loss are high on the list of incidents where blood is badly needed, we also use blood or plasma for pets with clotting problems, internal parasites, heat stroke and internal bleeding.
Blood Transfusion Services FAQs
You may have questions about our blood transfusion services at Southwest Florida Veterinary Specialists. Here are the most frequently asked questions we receive from participants:
- What are some common situations in which blood or plasma is needed?
Veterinarians often require blood or plasma for a wide range of situations, including:
- Critical illnesses
- Clotting problems
- Heat stroke
- Internal parasites
- Internal bleeding
- Traumatic blood loss
Our Blood Bank allows veterinarians to treat their patients quickly and safely with blood collected from volunteers. We need your help. Please allow your pet to save the lives of other beloved pets and become a "blood donor hero."
- What are your blood donor eligibility requirements from dogs and cats?
To be eligible to donate blood, dogs and cats must be:
- Between 1 & 8 years of age
- Weight: 45 lbs. or more for dogs and 10 lbs. or more for cats
- Healthy with a gentle temperament
- Comfortable with handling by non-family members
- Current with vaccinations
- Never had a blood transfusion
- Test negative for blood-borne diseases (free testing by blood bank)
- Must be on flea, tick and heartworm prevention year round
- Not currently in a breeding program (female dogs)
- Able to undergo mild sedation
- Meet all scheduled donation appointments
- What information do you need from pet owners?
Our center needs signed consent prior to donation, as well as a completed health history form, including questions on medical history, vaccinations and overall health.
We ask that pets donate approximately every 6 to 8 weeks (dogs) and 8 to 12 weeks (cats). Immediately after donation, the body starts to replace the blood that was donated. The donations take place at Southwest Florida Veterinary Specialists and pick up and drop off times can often be arranged around your schedule.
- What happens during the donation procedure?
Pets should be fasted prior to the procedure as light sedation may be necessary. Blood donation takes approximately 15-20 minutes, but pets will need to be dropped off for a few hours. The procedure will not jeopardize your pet's health, and is not painful.
We lie your pet down on his or her side on comfortable blankets and clip an area of hair over the jugular vein. After preparing the area with a sterile scrub, blood is collected through a needle into a sterile collection set. Afterwards, your pet is given lots of TLC, water, and treats.
Blood samples are sent to IDEXX Labs for a complete blood count, chemistry panel, and blood typing at no extra charge.
- Do you offer perks to blood donors?
Owners that participate in the program will receive several perks. Each qualifying donor can receive:
- A comprehensive physical exam
- Approximately $300.00 in blood testing, including a comprehensive blood panel and blood typing
- Testing for blood-borne diseases and heartworm infection
- Complimentary flea, tick and heartworm prevention
- Discounted emergency and specialty services at Southwest Florida Veterinary Specialists & 24-Hour Emergency Hospital
For more information, or to schedule an appointment please call (239) 992-8387.