Feline blood donors: the cat’s meow

By Connie Orcutt • Published: January 1st, 2017
Category: Animal Airwaves

Cats have several needs for blood transfusion—like traumatic blood loss or decreased red blood cells due to illness. Problem is, feline blood is a rarer commodity than the canine variety.

Blood collection is relatively simple in dogs, who rarely need to be sedated. But it’s a different kettle of fish for cats, who are often less tolerant of handling. A short period of sedation is usually necessary to collect the 40 milliliters of blood most cats can easily spare.

Potential feline donors are examined and tested before the procedure—both to confirm their suitability for sedation and to rule out blood-borne disease. After blood collection, most cats eat and are good to go within the hour. They don’t even seem to feel lightheaded like some humans after donating.

So hats off to feline blood donors—who are the cat’s meow.