Your dog or cat can donate blood to help other pets in need at Sierra Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Center.

Almost any pet can donate their blood as long as they are happy and healthy, "We want them to be adults, healthy, up to date on vaccines and minimal travel outside the Reno-Tahoe area," says Miranda Tortorici. They recommend little travel outside the Reno-Tahoe area to make sure donors don't catch any infections or tick borne illnesses.

Animal hospitals need blood donations for the same reason why us humans do, for trauma patients, or with chronic kidney disease and even post surgical patients. They can get blood at blood banks but it is easier and more beneficial to have it locally donated, "we can get blood from blood banks and this is helpful but sometimes we need blood in emergency situations," explains Tortorici. 

Who can be a blood donor: 

  • Felines, 1-7 years of age:
    • Minimum weight of 8lbs
    • Donors are retired after 10 years of age 
  • Canines, 1-5 years of age:
    • Minimum weight of 50lbs
    • Donors are retired after 8 years of age
  • Ideal donors meet the following criteria:
    • Healthy and fully vaccinated
    • Amenable to handling and restraint
    • Ideally a universal blood type for donation
    • Canine patients can be donors even if they are DEA 1.1 and DEA 1.2 positive
    • Heartworm negative
    • Negative for blood-borne and rickettsial diseases 

If you are interested and your pet meets the qualifications, you can call 775-358-8555 or visit the hospital at 555 Morrill Ave. in Reno.