A Blood transfusion can save your pet's life

A Blood transfusion can save your pet's life. Perry Smith / WGXA News

HOUSTON COUNTY, Ga -- When you donate blood you can save lives, and your pet can do it too. A blood donation saved one Middle Georgia woman's dog at a time of need.

Christie Foster said her dog is a part of the family.

"She is a Doberman, and I've had Dobermans all my life," Foster said. "She's my world."

She said when her dog got sick, she needed a blood transfusion to survive.

"She came down with cancer, and when we had to do surgery on her and she had a lot of bleeding, and had to have a blood transfusion," Foster said. "Without that blood transfusion she would not have made it."

Veterinarian George McCommon said there are several reasons animals need blood transfusions.

"It's used often times for an animal's whose bone marrow's suppressed and its not producing blood cells, or the animal's lost a lot of blood to a laceration or it's been hit by a car," McCommon said.

He said it's pretty common.

"If you're an emergency vet, you're probably going to be doing this fairly often," McCommon said. "If you're in a regular, run of the mill practice, it's probably not something you're going to do on a frequent basis."

Owners can take their animals in to donate their blood ahead of time, but usually it's better if the blood is fresh.

"Most veterinarians have a blood donor animal or a list of people that have agreed to donate blood."

Animals have to go through a health check to be cleared to be a donor. Donations have to be made dog to dog or cat to cat. If you want your pet to become a donor talk to your vet.

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