Friday, January 28, 2011

We need you!

I've talked before about how a few of my greyhounds are blood donors. On Sunday I took Moose to the Salem Emergency Veterinary Clinic for a donation and since it was planned, there were enough hands on deck that I could stand back and take pictures.

Normally, I am right in there beside my hound as they are drawing the blood.

I told Moose it was time to go to work, but he just saw it as another adventure, an opportunity to co-pilot.

The short wait in the reception area became a real yawner for Moose when I reminded them to make sure the resident kitty cat was tucked away safely behind closed doors.

Admiring his big coursing veins is always the first step. They are right out there front and center.

A quick shave to insure that the area is clean. Of course, Moose has the shortest hair of all, so the bald spot hardly shows afterward.

The front-end tech gently holds the head. The idea is to avoid any movement so that the needle stays in place. The first time blood is drawn on a dog always seems to be the worst.

My guys usually settle down after the first time and just stand there.

During the draw, Dr. Erbes was telling me that the last time Moose donated, he was able to help three other dogs.

On many occasions, we have been able to meet both the dog and their owners. It's very touching when you know you have helped save a life. I know how grateful I would be if my dog needed blood to save his life.

A team of four assists with the blood draw. The veterinarian draws the blood and holds the needle in place. A tech holds the head, another tech holds the body and this time, a second veterinarian is rocking the blood and weighing it as it pumps into the bag. Normally, I'm holding the back end of my hound.

My dogs usually stand, but Moose was relaxed enough to sit there during the entire time. It took 4.5 minutes from the needle stick to clamping it off to fill the bag. I think our record is 4 minutes.

This may look like the choke hold of death, but really they are just putting pressure on site where the blood was drawn. Completely normal.

Here we are, 450 gm of Moose's famous go-go juice.

Since they have such thin skin, greyhounds are famous for getting small bruises under the skin. A little bit of ice held to the area helps to reduce the bruising. It doesn't show up so much on black dogs, but the fawn and white dogs always show their hickeys.

A snack is always in order when it is over with. Just one of those perks.

And every good kid gets a smiley sticker when do their very best.

But the very best part of all are the loves and hugs and whispers of "whatta good boy" in his ears.

Greyhounds can donate blood until they are 8 years old, then it is time to retire them from the donating program.

It is a wonderful gift that they can give. If you are interested, talk to your vet or talk to your emergency vet to see if they have a donor program. As you can see, it's a very easy procedure. Moose sat through the entire draw and was ready run and play in the backyard after. However, activity is restricted for about 24 hours after giving blood.

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houndstooth said...

I've never seen the process before! That's pretty cool! Moose, Bunny says that you are handsome enough to pull off wearing a collar with pink hearts on it, too!

Angel @ Life with LuLu said...

That is amazing! I never even realized that dogs could donate blood, but of course, now that I think about it, the need for blood must be just as great as that for humans.

Thanks for documenting the process. I can't believe how calm Moose was throughout the whole thing. What a sweet boy!

BZ Dogs said...

What a brave boy Moose is - although he kinda looks like he wishes he was elsewhere in the top photo.

What a great thing to do!

The Barn Door said...

Way to go Moose!! Thanks for doing something so important!!

Beyond the Dog Dish said...

I feel almost foolish. I never knew this, but naturally now that you have talked about this, it makes total sense. What a great feeling to know you have helped out.

Anonymous said...

My Daddy has given the equivalent of his whole body in blood to the redcross. I never thought about dog's giving blood. Hmmm. I don't know if I could sit still for 4 seconds much less 4 minutes. You guys are amazing.

Your pal,

Happy blog hop

Greyhounds CAN Sit said...

Way to go Moose:) That is so wonderful what you and your dogs are doing. Moose seems to take it all in his stride. I think 4 minutes would seem like 4 hours to me if Beryl was having blood taken. I don't know if we have this sort of thing in New Zealand. I must make enquiries. Thanks for sharing the photos:)

Pamela said...

Thank you so much for sharing this. i've thought about signing up for blood donations before but my previous dogs were too small.

Honey would probably be the right size (and temperament) to donate once she grows up a little bit and settles down.

It really helps to see just what's involved here and the amount of time it takes.

Mad Red Hare said...

I love it that our hounds can be blood donors. I saw a sign at the Red Cross the other day asking for donors, so it must be the same way for dogs right now too!

Amy said...

Thanks so much for the detailed account of a blood donation. I lived in Columbus, Oh when I got my first Greyhound, and he was a donor at OSU. I loved the program, but never got to see behind the scenes.

Kristin G. said...

He's such a good boy for donating! This was such an interesting post. Thanks so much for sharing your experience! Have a greyt weekend!

Shawn Finch, DVM said...

aw this is awesome! I think everyone should see your post who just is nervous about their pet getting blood drawn! My Max the Cat was a blood donor at my vet school when I met him and they let him retire and move in with me. His blood donating friends were another beautiful cat and six beautiful Greyhounds. Bless you for all the pets you are helping!

melF said...

Moose is quite the trooper. Wow! It's great that you could share this experience with folks. It's not something people often talk about.

I do have a question for you though... Is it pretty common for Greyhounds to be blood donors? I remember reading about a greyhound who did the same thing here in our city. I seem to remember them saying something about greyhounds being the ideal candidates for this. Is that true?

Congrats to you and Moose for saving other animals' lives!

Ruff Toy Reviews said...

Wow, Moose is a hero! I can't imagine Moxie sitting still for that... she had her nails clipped today and howled like she was being murdered in cold blood! Good boy Moose!

24 Paws of Love said...

I never realized they took the blood from the neck. Moose is very brave and such a tough dog. Maybe some day one of my dogs could do that-like under athesiea!! BOL