Pet Blood Bank uk (PBBuk)was set up as the first UK charity to collect, process, store and distribute pet blood products to veterinary professionals in the UK.
A change in legislation in October 2005 made it possible for vets to store pet blood. Recognising this a an opportunity to develop a pet blood bank, Vets Now raised the funds to set up and support the PBBuk charity.
PBBuk collect canine blood which is then processed into various blood products and stored on the premises. The blood products are then sold to veterinary practices across the UK. Any profits are re-employed into educational programmes such as developing veterinary transfusion medicine within the UK.
Vets Now are the leaders in pet critical care in the UK. Blood transfusions are an essential and common proecedure and Vets Now realised the importance of developing veterinary transfusion medicine in the UK. They therefore wanted to provide financial support and trained veterinary staff to help Pet Blood Bank uk develop.
The blood bank is centrally based in Loughborough, Leicestershire.
Pet Blood Bank uk supplies blood products to the UK veterinary profession at cost price, i.e. the cost of obtaining the blood through canine donations, processing and storage.
As a charity we recommend that the veterinary practices we supply blood to, do not mark up the price of blood in the cost of treatment to their clients. Obviously there will be a separate charge for the diagnostics and clinical services associated with administering a blood transfusion, which will differ from practice to practice.
Any profit the charity may make in the future will be reinvested in the charity to further our remit in the areas of animal welfare and transfusion education.
The dogs must be between one and eight years old. They must weigh over 25kg and be in good health. Dogs must never have travelled abroad, must have up to date vaccinations and must never have received a blood transfusion. Register your dog.
The Pet Blood Bank UK will ask dogs to donate three to four times a year.
PBBuk stocks and supplies positive and negative Packed Red Blood Cells. However, approximately 70% of dogs are DEA 1.1 positive and 30% DEA 1.1 negative, therefore when we collect blood it is more difficult to find negative donors and the pressure on supply of negative blood is further compounded by the fact that negative blood can be given to DEA 1.1 positive blood type dogs, a regular occurence where dogs have not been blood typed. So to ensure vital supplies of DEA 1.1 negative blood are always available for those dogs who can only accept negative blood, we advise that a patient be blood typed prior to a transfusion.
Each unit of blood is placed into a centrifuge and spun in order to separate its two main component parts - red blood cells and plasma.
Red blood cells are stored in a nutrient solution for up to 42 days in a fridge at a monitored temperature of 4 degrees centigrade.
Plasma is frozen and can be stored as fresh frozen plasma for one year and as frozen plasma for up to five years at minus 18 degrees centigrade.
For more information on our blood products see our data sheets.
We encourage veterinary practices to store our products in order to prevent their requirement becoming an emergency. However, we understand not all practices will have the facilities to do so. In these cases we recommend practices within a local area make arrangements to 'share' blood. For example if there is a large veterinary hospital or referral centre in the area, a local agreement can be set up between veterinary practices for the larger hospital to stock basic blood products and then share as required with smaller, local practices.
In addition, it is important to note that Fresh Frozen Plasma lasts for twelve months, stored at minus 18 degrees centigrade. If not used within the twelve month period it is classed as Frozen Plasma and lasts for a further four years, therefore storage of this product should be possible as long as a freezer is available.
Packed Red Blood cells need to be stored in a fridge. Although you can choose to purchase a dedicated blood fridge, a standard fridge can be used provided you use a fridge thermometer to monitor the temperature. (thermometers are available to purchase from PBBuk). Stored units of Packed Red Blood Cells should be gently agitated a couple of times a week, for full details see our data sheet.
As a general rule, 2ml/kg of Packed Red Blood Cells will raise the PCV by 2%. Blood products should always be administered using a filtered administration set and the calculated dose given within 4 hours if the patient's condition permits. For full details about administration of PRBC, see our data sheet.
The standard recommended dose for clotting factor deficiencies is 10 - 20ml/kg twice daily. Blood products should always be administered using a filtered administration set and the calculated dose given within 4 hours if the patient's condition permits. For full details about administration of FFP, see our data sheet.
Pet Blood Bank can provide a same day service for urgent orders - please call us on 01509 232 222 to arrange this. We will dispatch the blood product within one hour and the courier will drive it directly to your practice. Therefore the time it will take for the blood to arrive is one hour plus the drivetime from Loughborough to your practice.
Pet Blood Bank has an emergency service. Please call our office on 01509 232 222 and you will be directed to our Out of Hours service who will arrange a same day delivery for you. We have negotiated a preferential service with our courier and are able to offer all UK practices a same day servive. The courier will collect your order from Loughborough within one to two from order and drive it directly to your practice.
This is a premium service which has an out of hours administration fee of £30 and £1 per mile delivery charge. We will be able to give you an accurate quote when you place your order. More details on what to in an emergency.
We are always looking for more donors and support, therefore please advise your clients to visit our website for more information on how to register their dog and other ways to help us.
We have posters and leaflets you can display in your waiting room. You can also recommend any dogs you think would be good donors and there are many ways to support our work.
PBBuk hope to be able to include other pets, such as cats in the blood bank scheme in the future.