Frequently Asked Questions


Who are we?

lndyVet Emergency and Specialty Hospital is a 24-hour specialty practice comprised of emergency, internal medicine, surgery, ophthalmology and rehabilitation services. IndyVet Blood donation center grew out of our need for canine and feline blood products to treat our patients. At IndyVet we save animals through transfusion medicine, and now, IndyVet blood donation center allows us to provide much-needed blood and transfusion supplies to veterinarians and their patients. All of our canine donors are client owned pets that volunteer to be a part of our blood donor program. We also rescue and adopt healthy feline donors otherwise destined for euthanasia. These donors are maintained in our closed feline colony, and often we provide the first compassionate home they have ever known.


How are our blood donors screened?

We follow the ACVIM guidelines for blood donor screening for blood borne pathogens. In addition to a complete blood cell count and serum biochemistry panel, all canine donors are screened for Dirofilaria, Lyme, Babesia, Anaplasma, Ehrlichia, Bartonella, Hepatozoon, Leishmania, Neorickettsia risticii, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, and Mycoplasma spp. upon admission to the program. A complete blood cell count, serum biochemistry panel and screening for Dirofilaria, Lyme, Anaplasma, and Ehrlichia are performed annually.

All canine blood donors are typed for DEA 1, 4, 5, and 7.

All feline donors are typed (Feline A and Feline B) and screened for Feline Leukemia Virus, Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, Mycoplasma spp., Anaplasma, Bartonella, Cytauxzoon Felis, and Ehrlichia in addition to routine bloodwork. A complete blood cell count, serum biochemistry panel and screening for Mycoplasma spp. are performed yearly after admission into the colony.


How many blood types do dogs have?

Up to 11 blood types of dogs have been identified based on the presence or absence of red blood cell antigens called Dog Erythrocyte Antigen or DEA. In routine transfusion medicine, there are only 5 blood groups considered. These are groups DEA 1, 3, 4, 5, and 7. DEA 3 and 5 have minimal significance. DEA 1 was previously thought to have distinct subtypes but recent studies have shown that the hypothesized subtypes are actually different expression levels of the same antigen. Dogs may have only one blood group or they may have a combination of blood groups. Most dogs have a combination of blood groups. DEA 4 is present in 99.9% of the population and as such is not a significant reactive antigen.

DEA 1 is highly antigenic and is the main blood type responsible for acute, severe, hemolytic transfusion reactions in dogs. Approximately 45-55% of the canine population is positive for DEA 1.


How many blood types do cats have?

Cats have 3 blood types, A, B, and AB. Similar to dogs, the blood type designation is based on the erythrocyte antigen present (Feline Erythrocyte Antigen or FEA). Type A is the most common type, but type B is quite common in certain pedigree breeds. Group AB is rare in all breeds.


What canine blood products do we carry?

We carry fresh frozen and stored plasma and cryoprecipitate. We also have packed red blood cells (pRBCs) available for three types: DEA 4 positive only, DEA 1 negative, and DEA 1 positive. Whole blood is also available as a special request.

Category

Definition

Clinical Significance

DEA 4 positive only

This donor has DEA type 4 only and does not have DEA types 1, 3, 5, or 7

This is an appropriate choice when the DEA status of the recipient is unknown.

DEA 1.1 Negative

This donor does not have DEA 1. It may also have any or all of the following blood types: DEA 3, 4, 5, 7

Lacking DEA 1 makes this dog a safer donor than a DEA 1 positive dog when the blood type of the recipient is unknown. This blood is appropriate in a DEA 1 negative recipient. There is no advantage to using DEA 1 negative blood in a DEA 1 positive patient.

DEA 1.1 Positive

This donor does have DEA 1 and it may also have any or all of the following blood types: DEA 3, 4, 5, 7

This blood is appropriate in a DEA 1 positive recipient. DEA 1 positive blood should only be used in DEA 1 positive dogs.


What feline blood products do we carry?

We carry both fresh frozen and stored feline plasma. We also have type A and B packed red blood cells (pRBCs) and whole blood.


What is the shelf life of pRBCs and whole blood?

The shelf life of the canine pRBCs varies by size. All units contain CPDA-1 as an anticoagulant. Our double units contain AS-5 (optisol) as a red cell preservative solution. The shelf life of products with preservative is 42 days, and the shelf life of single units without preservative is 30 days. Canine whole blood contains CPDA-1 as an anticoagulant and has a shelf life of 35 days.


What is the shelf life of Fresh Frozen Plasma (FFP) and stored plasma?

Fresh frozen plasma has a shelf life of 1 year from the date of collection, after that it is considered stored plasma. Stored plasma has a shelf life of 4 years.





IndyVet is AAHA Accredited
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Fear Free
Cat Friendly Practice
IndyVet is AAHA Accredited
Donate to IndyVet's AVMF Fund
Fear Free
Care Credit
Cat Friendly Practice
IndyVet is AAHA Accredited

Donate to IndyVet's AVMF Fund

Care Credit

Fear Free

Cat Friendly Practice