The number of blood donor animals is less than necessary to meet the demand
According to the Director of Hemovet Petcare, Simone Gonçalves Rodrigues Gomes, the initiative is very important to save the lives of dogs and cats, which is why it points out the main diseases in which blood transfusions are indicated: "Severe anemia caused by transmitted diseases by ticks, mainly ehrlichiosis and babesiosis, in the case of dogs".
In cats, severe anemia can occur in cases of mycoplasmosis, transmitted by fleas and viral diseases such as feline viral leukemia; Accidents that cause bleeding, such as run over, fights with other dogs, and snake bites; Surgical procedures, especially increasingly frequent tumors and correction of extensive fractures; Anemia resulting from problems in organs such as the kidneys and liver, called renal and hepatic failure, respectively, and immune-mediated hemolytic anemia '.
However, to make the donation, which can be made every three months, it is necessary that the animal meets certain requirements, maintaining its own health and benefiting the recipient. 'Dogs must have a minimum weight of 27 kg, age between 1 and 8 years old, docile temperament, updated vaccination and deworming, tick and flea control. Cats must have a minimum weight of 4 kg, age between 1 and 6 years, docile temperament, up-to-date vaccination and deworming, and flea and tick control ', explains the Director of Hemovet Petcare.
It is noteworthy that, before the act, and previously, tests are mandatory to detect diseases that may be present without symptoms. Among them, hemogram, tests to detect ehrlichiosis, babesiosis, heartworm, Lyme, leishmaniasis, brucellosis, renal function, mycoplasmosis, feline leukemia and feline immunodeficiency should be performed.
"Donating blood is a gesture of love and saves lives and transfusions are essential in the treatment of animals", reinforces the Professor and Manager of the São Judas Veterinary Hospital, Simone Rodrigues Ambrósio, recalling that, in some veterinary blood centers, such as Hemovet Petcare, there is the possibility of scheduling the service.
Although it is not a difficult act to perform, Simone Gonçalves also emphasizes that it is necessary to take several precautions, especially before starting the procedure, such as: 'perform typing and compatibility tests before transfusions of packed red blood cells and whole blood; previously evaluate the vital parameters of the animal and monitor them throughout the procedure (interrupt the infusion in the event of hyperthermia, tachycardia, tachypnea and / or respiratory distress, urticaria and angioedema) and transfuse the indicated blood component to avoid circulatory overload, preventing the appearance of transfusion reactions '.
Still battling the Covid-19 pandemic, which requires social distancing, countless blood banks, already struggling, saw their stocks run out. 'If before the donation of blood from dogs and cats was already difficult to happen, in recent months the situation has become even more complicated. Some tutors opted for home collection and others preferred to cancel it ', explains Kátia García, Veterinary Doctor and Director of the Veterinary Hemotherapy Center (CHVET), adding that the current number of donors is still far below what is necessary to cover the demand.
Therefore, for Katia, who emphasizes that a bag of donated blood is divided into blood components and can be used in up to four animals, discussing blood donation with guardians is essential.
'Many of them are unaware of the importance and others fear that the procedure poses some risk to the pet. The entire blood donation procedure is performed by the veterinarian, it is safe, painless and fast, it takes about 10 minutes. In addition to saving lives, the donor performs essential health examinations ', she invites the tutors.
All help is needed
Finally, Simone Gonçalves reiterates that there is no 'synthetic' blood or a substitute for blood, so 'we need everyone's solidarity so that our mission can continue to save many lives. Each donor will make a difference in the life for a family of pets ', concludes the professional.
Source: Caes e Gatos Vet & Food