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Willows 'Phone a Friend for the Pet Blood Bank Campaign 2013'

17 June 2013

Willows “Phone A Friend For The Pet Blood Bank Campaign 2013”

At Willows we see a wide variety of patients some of whom have life-threatening diseases associated with blood loss and severe anaemia. Some of these patients need transfusions with blood or blood products, and many of our patients have benefitted from treatment that would not have been possible without the help and support of the Pet Blood Bank. This is a not-for-profit organisation that provides life saving blood products for dogs throughout the UK. We receive a fantastic service from the Pet Blood Bank and this greatly improves our ability to manage a wide range of life-threatening and complex illnesses in dogs, many of whom are referred to us for Specialist care.

August 2013 sees the 4th anniversary of the move to our purpose-built multi-disciplinary hospital, and as part of our celebrations we are working with the Pet Blood Bank charity to host our first blood collection session on Tuesday August 13th 2013. To run a successful session we clearly need dog blood donors, and we are launching our 'Phone a Friend for the Pet Blood Bank Campaign 2013!', in which we are encouraging dog owners not only to consider their own dogs as potential donors, but also to help to recruit dog blood donors from amongst their dog-owning friends. We hope to celebrate the life of each dog that we have tried to help in the past by recruiting blood donors to help more dogs, and we hope to be hosting more blood donor sessions in the future.

By donating a unit of blood a dog could truly be giving the gift of life to others. Each time a dog gives blood it can help save the lives of up to four critically ill dogs.

The ideal blood donor is a healthy dog weighing over 25kg (55lbs) and aged between 1 and 8 years with a good temperament. If a dog is happy to lie quietly for a tummy rub we are off to a good start! If you are interested in finding out more about the charity or would like to watch a short video clip of a dog giving blood, please visit the website (www.petbloodbankuk.org) and go to 'What happens at a blood collection day'. Whilst any suitable dog is welcome, there are some breeds that are more likely to have the specific blood type which makes them particularly great blood donors – these special friends would be especially welcome. These breeds include Airedales, Boxers, Dobermanns, English Bull Terriers, Flat Coated Retrievers, German Shepherds, Greyhounds, Lurchers, Mastiffs, Pointers and Weimeraners.

We are now opening recruitment for suitable blood donors with a view to welcoming prospective heroes and heroines to Willows on August 13th 2013. Our blood collecting session will run between 3pm and 9pm and is a strict appointment only system (or we might be facing a little too much enthusiastic pandemonium!). Appointments for the session can be made directly through the Pet Blood Bank by phoning them on 01509 232222 and asking if you can register for the blood donation session at Willows Referral Service. The Pet Blood Bank have asked us to assure you that by talking to them you are by no means obliged to register any dog as a donor if you have second thoughts after speaking to them. For those dog owners who live too far away to come to the session at Willows, you can visit the Pet Blood Bank website and look for forthcoming sessions in your area.

Over the last four years over 100 of our canine patients have been helped by donations from their unknown four legged friends. Over the next few days we will be telling the stories of just a few of these patients, to highlight the many ways in which blood donation can save some very important lives.

Watch for the stories of Ben, Rolo, Daisy, Sid and Barley over the next few days!