FINDING HOMES AND SAVING LIVES
Would your veterinarian have the correct type and amount of blood on-hand if your dog was experiencing a health emergency and required a transfusion?
Blood shortages exist for dogs just like they exist for people. What might surprise you is that our TSF Grant Partner Oregon Greyhound Adoption and its kennel of ready-to-adopt greyhounds are an integral part of the blood shortage solution. Greyhounds who find their forever home upon retirement also participate in this adoption organization’s canine blood donor program known as Lifesavers.
FACT: Just one blood donation from a greyhound can provide several blood products. In greyhound math, one donor greyhound may help up to 4 other dogs in need! Now, that’s GREYT!
Making Fast Friends
With more than 300 vetted greyhound adoption organizations throughout the United States, Tony’s foundation seeks out those that provide a unique program or service amid the crowded field. Oregon Greyhound Adoption is completely run by volunteers and serves the state of Oregon and Southern Washington (state). Since July 2006, these hard-working dedicated volunteers have placed more than 450 hounds from those retiring from the track, young dogs that do don’t make the cut on the track and retiring broodies (moms). Largely these greyhounds arrive in the northwest from Florida tracks and from greyhound farms in Kansas and Oklahoma.
Volunteers are devoted to the mission of assisting retired greyhounds. Volunteer handlers conduct bi-monthly adoption events, visit the farm & kennels where dogs are walked, socialized, groomed, taught how to take treats and to become familiar with collars and leashes. But, most importantly, these volunteers make sure the greyhounds are safe, healthy and loved.
Volunteers come to know and love each of these dogs and work to find the right forever home. But, they also open hearts to saving the lives of dogs they don’t know – those who will benefit through the blood donation program.
Greyhounds Make Ideal Donors
Upon arrival at the Oregon Greyhound Adoption kennel, these gentle dogs are greeted with soft beds, plenty of food & water and lots of hugs. While awaiting placement in their forever homes, all greyhounds are screened to participate in a blood donor program run by VCA NWVS Critical Care Blood Bank.
Their official next stop is to the blood bank where they are undergo a thorough health screening along with a blood donor vetting process. Each dog receives an extensive blood panel diagnosis insuring not only their viability as a blood donor but also to confirm they are healthy for adoption to the right individual or family.
Like people, a dog in crisis requiring a blood donation must be exactly matched or the donated blood must be ‘universal’. Most greyhounds have Universal Negative – the blood type most in demand and one which can be used on any dog requiring a transfusion.
Oregon Greyhound Adoption dogs that meet both the health requirements and have the useable blood type are tagged as Blood Donors. These dogs may donate 1 pint of blood up to 4 times in one year while in the kennel pending adoption. During a process that takes a mere 10 minutes, blood is drawn from the greyhound’s jugular. Donating blood is not painful to the canine donor in part due to the neck area having fewer nerves. The majority of dogs require no sedation whatsoever.
Victoria – A Donor & Family Member
Doug & Jodee adopted their greyhound Victoria about 3 years ago and decided to keep her in the blood donation program. Each time a greyhound is adopted, volunteers encourage the new owner(s) to allow their dog to continue donating blood although it is not a requirement for adoption. About 75% of owners do continue with the program as they fully understand its importance alongside the fact it is not dangerous or detrimental to their new furry family member.
As an all-volunteer organization and one that focuses its financial resources on helping retired greyhounds navigate to their forever homes, Oregon Greyhound Adoption strategically gains additional services while “doing the right thing” for others. Saving in veterinarian care equates to have additional funding for helping more retired greyhounds find their forever homes.
In exchange for blood donation from greyhounds awaiting adoption, the blood bank reciprocates by providing several services free of charge for each hound including:
- Annual veterinary examination
- Blood work screening including infectious disease screening
- Heartworm testing
- 12-months of heartworm/parasite preventative medication
- Toys & Treats
For more information about Oregon Greyhound Adoption visit:
www.oregongreyhound.com | Visit us on Facebook