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Doggy blood banks saving lives

Dog owners in our region are being urged to consider visitng a canine blood bank. The charity Pet Blood Bank has been running donor sessions for dogs for more than six years - but have recently seen a 25 per cent increase in demand.

More than 4,000 dogs have now signed up to the charity.

And while there are some concerns they have no choice in the matter, the charity says they won't take a dog who shows signs of unwillingness.

Helen Steel reports:

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Doggy donors saving their canine friends

Dog owners in our region are being urged to consider visiting a canine blood bank.

A dog having its blood taken

The charity Pet Blood Bank has been running donor sessions for dogs for more than six years - but have recently seen a 25 per cent increase in demand.

More than four thousand dogs have now signed up to the charity. And while there are some concerns they have no choice in the matter, the charity says they won't take a dog who shows signs of unwillingness.

The vets check how much is taken

Donors have to be 25kg or more. At a session in Wetherby yesterday, Huskies Lara and Blondie (Lara pictured) gave 530ml of blood each. They've given blood four times each - one session can save four dogs, so between them they could have saved 12 canine friends.

Their owner Avril Thompson from Leeds says they wouldn't be allowed to go through with it if they were uncomfortable.

A quick nibble to get the donors back on their paws

She said: "They were absolutely fine doing it. They get a free health check before. It fills my heart with pride to think they could save so many dogs.

The blood is separated into red blood cells and plasma before it's refrigerated. It's then distributed to vets, who need to treat dogs with conditions such as autoimmune diseases.

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