PORTLAND, Ore.— DoveLewis Emergency Animal Hospital will be recruiting new canine volunteer blood donors at The NW Pet & Companion Fair, happening this weekend, April 12-13, at the Portland Expo Center (located at 2060 North Marine Drive). Pet owners interested in having their dogs join the DoveLewis Blood Bank are invited to stop by the DoveLewis booth (#103) from 12:30PM - 1:30PM on Saturday to have their dogs typed. Typing will be performed on a first-come-first-serve basis (and a sign-up sheet for scheduling later typing appointments at DoveLewis will be available). News reporters who would like to cover the typing are asked to contact Shawna Harch at firstname.lastname@example.org or 971.255.5933 in advance.
“The typing process is very quick and easy,” said Jill Greene, program director of the DoveLewis Blood Bank. “We will be collecting six milliliters of blood from each dog to send out to a laboratory for typing and to determine the health of the blood donor. Since there are so many different blood types and combinations, we streamline our donor pool by accepting only the two most common blood types, plus a universal donor type. The majority of dogs fit into one of these three ‘type combinations.’”
All DoveLewis Blood Bank donors must weigh a minimum of 55 pounds and be healthy, easy-going, between the ages of one and six, and current on vaccines. Dogs who have previously received a blood transfusion are unfortunately not eligible to become blood donors. DoveLewis requests that families commit to bringing their dogs in for donations between four and six times per year for at least three years.
Dogs who volunteer with the blood bank help save the lives of dogs in need of emergency transfusions. Last year, 93 canine donors donated 446 units to the DoveLewis Blood Bank, and 16 feline donors donated 121 units. A total of 383 units were provided as transfusions and 107 units were supplied to the community. Cats must be anesthetized in order to give blood, so DoveLewis doesn’t allow privately owned cats to become volunteer blood donors. However, the staff at DoveLewis adopts stray cats who become blood donors in exchange for a fun place to live and lots of attention. Canine superheroes always receive a new toy and lots of treats after each donation they make. DoveLewis also hosts an annual appreciation party for blood bank volunteers and their families.
Those who are planning to attend the NW Pet & Companion Fair with their dogs will be required to submit a Pet Waiver Form, which may be completed ahead of time or on-site at the fair. Attendees are also asked to read through the Bring Your Pet Guidelines. Admission to the fair is free for both pets and people. Anyone who wants to get involved with the DoveLewis Blood Bank but isn’t able to attend the fair is encouraged to submit an online interest form.
DoveLewis Emergency Animal Hospital, established in 1973 and based in Portland, Ore., is the only nonprofit, 24-hour emergency and intensive care unit in the region. DoveLewis provides donor-funded programs to the community, including one of the United States’ largest volunteer-based animal blood banks, a nationally recognized pet loss support program, a partnership with Guide Dogs for the Blind to bring animal-assisted therapy and education to the community, 24-hour stabilizing care for lost, stray and wild animals and financial assistance for qualifying low-income families and abused animals. Celebrating 40 years of service to the community, DoveLewis has treated over 500,000 animals and has been deemed one of Oregon’s Most Admired Nonprofits by The Portland Business Journal for seven years! For more information, please visit www.dovelewis.org.