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WATCH: Could your dog save a life in Cornwall?

WATCH: Could your dog save a life in Cornwall?

Published by the Pirate FM News Team at 8:02am 19th March 2017. (Updated at 8:22am 19th March 2017)

A group of vets' practices in north Cornwall has launched a plea for more-life-saving dogs.

Kernow Veterinary Group, based in Lostwithiel is appealing for new doggy blood donors like Clyde - a lurcher whose blood saved a collie who had swallowed rat poison.

They say willing dog owners would join a list of emergency contacts and could be called at short notice to let their pooches donate, because supplies cannot be stored.

Scroll down to watch what happens when man's best friend needs a blood transfusion.

Director Nicky Paull said: "We're hugely grateful because it is horrible when if we suddenly find there is a situation where we know we can make something better but we don't have the ability to do it.

"So to have people like that to call on, who we know we can call at all hours, means a lot to us and we're really grateful.

"We've just recently had success with Clyde who is our greyhound who has come in twice now in the last 18 months to give blood.

"The nice thing is now Clyde still keeps in touch with the other dog he gave blood to, and they meet up and go for walks together".

The group started five years ago, when Nicky and her team struggled to get hold of blood last-minute from healthy dogs. They also use blood-typing, which means they cannot just use any dog.

Nicky said: "We had to start looking elsewhere to start getting some animals potentially that we might be able to use - so we came up with this idea some years ago about having a bloodhoung group, where some of our clients would volunteer their dogs to come in at short notice and have a small amount of their blood removed from them".

She says the scheme is largely successful, with numerous pets being saved in this way.

However there are a number or restrictions, including dogs needing to be a healthy weight and under eight years old.

She said: "It is literally life-saving because although we can get blood products - like plasma and syrum into dogs, which can be stored and frozen - full blood can't and you need full blood for dogs in emergencies".

Nicky adds that they only take on dogs who are clients at the vets, but anyone hoping to put their dog up for blood donation, should contact their local group.

So what happens when your pet needs a transfusion?

 

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