Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Extra! Extra! Read all about it!

Have you ever thought about having your dog be a blood donor? Blood products can be in just as great a need for canines, as they can for humans.

The benefits of doing this with your dog can be:
  • Free annual blood chemistries, including a heartworm test
  • Free, or discounted vaccinations
  • Wonderful way to get your dog out there every 8 weeks to socialize and interact
  • A warm fuzzy feeling, knowing your pit bull is helping another dog
Each blood bank handles these benefits differently, but most will give you some sort of annual blood panel screening and heartworm test at no cost, if your dog donates a few times a year.

Tonka has been doing this since he was old enough to donate (about a year old) and he is a superstar at the Eastern Veterinary Blood Bank (www.evbb.com) in Severna Park, MD. He is a favorite of the clinic not only because he is a perfect patient, but because he is one of those pit bulls that can’t hold his Licker! He likes to give the staff lots of kisses.

As a reward, he gets a plain hamburger from his favorite fast food drive-through afterwards (or chicken nuggets, depending on his mood.) He also gets a beautiful kerchief each time, handmade by one of the staff at he clinic. Currently, he has a snazzy kerchief for every major holiday, including his birthday.

Most dogs can donate until about the age of eight, before they need to retire. So, if you think your dog might be a candidate for this, talk to your vet for a recommendation to a blood bank close to you.

Who knows, your pit bull just might save another dog’s life!