We all know how heroic animals can be. But what about dogs that aren’t placed in extraordinary circumstances? Turns out, they can be the most important heroes out there, by simply donating blood!
Yes, dogs need donors just like humans do. Unless your dog has had major surgery that required a transfusion, you may not realize how great the need is. Recently, Imgur user dashclone documented their trip to the vet with dog Mac, who patiently put up with the 45 minute process. Before becoming a donor, Mac had to be tested for his type, which turned out to be the canine equivalent O negative (a universal donor), and he then took a trip to the vet for the actual donation. The process, right down to the blood bags, mirrors what humans go through when they donate, although Mac got a lot more attention and better treats than we do. Some dogs require fluids after the procedure in order to prevent drops in blood pressure or weakness, but Mac made it through with no such complications. His blood even saved the life of a critically ill dog! Talk about a wonderful ending to a generous donation.
The need for donations easily outstrips the volunteers. Canine blood is only viable for about 30 days after donation (human donations can last much longer), raising the need even more. Dogs that want to be donors are rigorously tested to insure that no disease or illness will be passed on, and the dog must also meet a health standard to make sure they can handle the process safely. States do have different laws regarding blood donations by animals, so it is essential to check in with your vet before considering donation. If your dog qualifies to donate, you can be sure they will be saving lives and making a difference to their furry brethren.
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The informative piece below from The University of Buckingham is a great starting point, but it may be a tad much for the squeamish.
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