• Clean scrub top or laboratory coat
  • Examination gloves
Persons required:
  • Phlebotomist Assistant to handle the collection bag
  • Assistant(s) to hold donor dog. Ideally 2 additional assistants if this is not a procedure the phlebotomist performs regularly
Donor selection:
  • Fit and healthy
  • Between one and 8 years old (use breed discretion)
  • 25kg lean bodyweight
  • Have a good temperament
  • Have never travelled abroad
  • Vaccinated
  • Not on any medication

Perform full physical health check

Perform full haematology and biochemistry analysis - packed cell volume/total solids as a minimum

Perform blood type (typing kits available to order)

Equipment required:
  • Clippers Chlorhexidine (or povidone-iodine) mixed with clean warm water to make a solution
  • Cotton wool or gauze swabs
  • Surgical spirit 450ml blood collection bag with CPDA-1 or CPD (available to order)
  • Electronic weigh scales 1000g (e.g. those used to weigh small furries)
  • 5 or 6 small swabs and roll of 10cm Vet Wrap for neck bandage
  • Scissors
  • Plastic or guarded haemostat (protective cover over haemostat teeth)
  • Macoclamp-P if using (available to order)
  • Tube stripper (available to order)
  • Wash hands and don clean examination gloves
  • Remove collection bag from its plastic storage bag. Place the empty collection bag on the scales (these must be in a position lower than the dog) and zero the scale
  • Clamp the haemostat approximately 5cm from needle on collection tubing (or ensure in-line clamp is closed if one provided)
  • Have an assistant bring the donor to the collection area
  • Have assistants make the donor comfortable on table in lateral recumbency with the chin pulled slightly forwards and gently pull the forelegs back towards the tail at a 40 degree angle to the body, exposing the jugular furrow
  • Clip an area 5cm x 5cm over the mid-jugular region allowing visualisation of the vein
    Using the chlorhexidine solution on cotton wool or a gauze swab, clean the area using a minimum of three passes (wipes)
  • Apply a small amount of surgical spirit to the area on cotton wool/swab or via the bottle and allow to dry
  • Change examination gloves for a clean pair
  • The assistant who will be managing the collection bag holds the bag below the donor and is responsible for removing/placing haemostat/clamp
  • Apply pressure at the thoracic inlet with the non-dominant hand to raise vein
  • Make a venipuncture holding the needle bevel up. Try for a clean stick into the vein to avoid loss of platelets and formation of fibrin clots
  • Have the assistant release haemostat/clamp
  • Blood should flow from the collection line to the bag easily. Flow rate should be approximately 40-50ml/minute allowing collection of the unit in <15 minutes
  • Mix the anticoagulant with the incoming blood immediately with a gently rocking motion. Continue mixing at 15 second intervals
  • Once the bag starts to look moderately full, start checking the weight occasionally on the scales which have already been set to account for the weight of the bag and anticoagulant
  • When 480g (450ml - one "unit") has been collected, the assistant managing the collection bag informs the phlebotomist who then releases the pressure on the vein
  • Clamp the collection line 5cm away from the needle with the haemostat/clamp
  • Hold 5 or 6 small swabs over the venipuncture site and remove the needle and replace cap/advance needle guard. Have the handler hold pressure on the venipuncture site for two minutes
  • Using the tube stripper (if available), strip the blood in the line into the bag. Stop 5cm from bag, fold the empty tubing and tie a knot behind the fold. Place a Macoclamp - P in front of the knot (if available). Cut the tubing on the needle-side of the knot and discard the needle with tubing into the sharps
  • Wrap the donors' neck with vet wrap bandage over the swabs and leave dressing on for 30-60 minutes.
  • Check demeanour, heart rate, mucous membrane colour and pulse quality
  • Move donor to separate area for 10-15 minute observation and to give a drink of water and a small amount of food. If demeanour, HR and mm colour are all within normal limits after this period then the donor is fine to go home with their owner who can remove the neck bandage at home
  • The blood collection bag should be labelled with date, time of collection, phlebotomist initials and blood type then stored at 1-6 degrees celsius if not using immediately