Hospital Blood Bank Program

blood bank greyhound donor

Life saving blood transfusions

VSOS is extremely proud to offer life-saving blood transfusions to seriously ill patients
through our in-house blood bank program to support the growing demand of dogs and
cats needing blood.

While we rely on dedicated staff members volunteering their time and pets to donate blood we need more donors to continue our life-saving service.

If you think you may have an eligible donor, we would love to meet you!

blood bank dog

Animals can require life saving blood transfusions for a variety of reasons.

Trauma cases can suffer acute haemorrhage, and patients undergoing risky surgeries may develop secondary bleeds or major vessel lacerations.

Anaemic animals can have low red blood cell levels due to parasite infections, and immune-mediated conditions like IMHA.

Toxicities like snake or spider envenomations and rat bait poisoning may also benefit from blood transfusions. With such a wide caseload, we rely on generous clients and staff to join our program with one-off or regular blood donations to continue to provide our care.

Dogs and cats can donate every 8 weeks but we recommend routine donors come every 3 months for repeat blood donations to ensure we are as safe as possible. One donation can save up to 3 lives!

We take the utmost care to ensure your furbaby receives gold standard treatment like the superhero they are throughout their visit with us.

Some clipper rash or bruising may develop from the venipuncture site but our team of highly trained staff take all possible action to reduce this.

For those excitable dogs or nervous cats, we may use sedation to ensure they stay calm and still throughout the procedure, their drugs are carefully selected on an individual basis by our team of experienced veterinarians.

Just like humans, dogs and cats also have blood types. Dogs are tested for the DEA.1 (Dog Erythrocyte Antigen) and can be either positive or negative for it.

About 60% of dogs are DEA.1 Negative which is great because we consider this blood group universal donors since they can donate to both positive and negative recipients.

Cats have performed antibodies and can be A type, B type or AB types. Type A cats are the most common and domestic short hairs and long hairs often represent this population.

Canine whole blood can be stored in the fridge for 31 days from collection but feline
blood can only be stored for 24hrs.

This is why we are proud to run an in clinic cat program to help us provide life saving treatments and endless staff cuddles. We rely on local blood donors that are willing to come in at the last minute for emergency cases
that need fresh whole blood transfusions vs stored as the components change once refrigerated.

blood bank labrador

Donor Eligibility

  • 1-7 years old
  • Over 4kg (lean weight)
  • No known medical conditions
  • Not on any current medications
  • Never previously received a blood transfusion
  • No brachycephalic breeds
  • Never travelled outside Australia
  • Up to date with vaccinations, heartworm, flea, tick and worming preventatives
  • Preferably indoor only
blood bank nurses vets

We look forward to hearing from you!

We dedicate every Wednesday to our blood bank program and are available for meet
and greets as well as blood donations by appointment all day.

We can arrange other dates and times that work better for you by contacting our blood bank facilitator (Gaby) on: or calling our reception team on (02) 8376 8767.

Register your interest

Patient stories

“Karina, and all of the vet nurses and vet specialists at VSOS, have such incredible empathy."
On the hardest day of Jimmy Barnes' life, the VSOS team was there.

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