Cats Donating Blood: Receiving Veterinary Services without Payment

The conditions are strict if your cat is to receive some veterinary services without monetary payment but veterinary schools and large veterinary clinics, in the USA, will probably provide services in exchange for a blood donation from your cat. Such services may include:

  • pet food
  • routine physical examinations
  • blood work
  • potentially heartworm preventative action
  • screening for numerous infectious diseases (I presume this is part of the actual blood donation process)
  • haemoglobin level testing
  • metabolic screens

The value of this services amounts to something in the order of $700-$1000. Not to be sniffed at...but of course you are agreeing that your cat will donate his or her blood and that is the responsibility of a cat guardian. It requires responsible decision making otherwise it could be deemed to be immoral.

There are some strict requirements, however, regarding the sort of cat that they will accept as a blood donor.

The ideal cat blood donor meets the following requirements:

  • aged between 2 to 7
  • healthy
  • more than 10 pounds in lean body weight
  • currently not on medication other than flea treatments, heartworm treatments or preventative tick treatments
  • the cat has to be a full-time indoor cat which I find surprising
  • the cat must have tested negative for feline leukaemia and feline immunodeficiency virus
  • the cat is not a breeding cat
  • the cat has never previously been transfused.  I presume that this means the cat has not received blood in the past.

Cat guardians who wish to nominate that their cat participates in this process need to realise that he/she will be sedated.  Sedation carries risks. I would certainly think carefully about the risks associated with sedating a cat. I'd ask the vet but he may underplay it. Full anaesthetics carry more risk.

Another upside is of course that your cat will be helping to save the lives of other cats.

As at 29th June 2014 the Southern Arizona Veterinary Specialty and ER is seeking donors. Details: For more information or to set up a screening, call (520) 888-3177 or email bloodbank@southernazvets.com.

Source: petmd.com

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