What Is Anemia And A Blood Transfusion
Like in humans, anemia in dogs is a disease that causes a loss of blood. The condition deprives the body of fluid and blood, which is required to circulate the much-needed oxygen and other nutrients for body tissues. Anemia can be caused due to blood loss from injury or trauma, or it may be caused by both immune and non-immune body reactions. As a result, the dog’s body either fails to produce the much-needed blood cells or actively destroys healthy blood cells.
If you are aware of the symptoms of canine anemia, you can help your furry friend in chronic and emergency health situations.
Anemic Dogs May Require a Blood Transfusion
In the worst cases, an anemic dog could require a blood transfusion.
What is blood transfusion?
It is the transfer of blood from one creature to another of the same species. Blood is usually taken from donor animals that are part of a blood donation program. They are tested and considered healthy and free of disease. Their blood is then packaged and frozen into whole blood or plasma. These materials can then be infused into other dogs that require blood transfusion due to loss of blood from injury, trauma, or illness. Like in humans, dogs have different blood types, so testing the type of blood is important to prevent an interaction that could destroy either the donated blood or remaining blood in the dog due to an immune reaction.
What Are Symptoms of Anemia in Dogs
Anemia is associated with such symptoms as blue or pale tissues (especially gums and tongue), decreased activity and appetite, trauma, and injury. Or it may appear as your dog is feeling “not his own self” and laying around more.
How Can I Prevent Canine Anemia
While some forms of anemia from disease or internal illness are not preventable, care can be taken to prevent anemia from trauma or blood loss. If your dog is involved in an accident or injured elsewhere, you would do well to ensure that there is not much blood loss. You should provide your dog with plenty of fluids, especially on hot days, to prevent dehydration, which may lead to anemia in the long run.
What Should I Do If I Suspect My Dog Has Anemia
If your dog has experienced an emergency situation resulting in blood loss, it is best to bring him or her to your veterinarian or local emergency clinic immediately. This will allow your veterinarian to stop any bleeding and prevent further blood loss. Your vet may also recommend a transfusion if there has been a significant loss of blood in order to provide the body with enough fluid and cells to stay alive.
If your dog has been showing signs and symptoms of anemia, you should see your vet immediately. Your vet will most likely recommend blood tests to look for signs of anemia. If there is anemia, additional tests may be recommended, such as X-rays, ultrasound, or further blood work, to determine the cause behind anemia.
Immune-related canine anemia may benefit from medications that help suppress the immune system and prevent destruction of the cells. Anemia caused by failure to produce cells can be treated with medications that help bump up blood cell production in the body. In more severe cases of illness, bone marrow transplants may be needed to reseed the body with cell producing materials or blood transfusion may be required. All of these treatments can help get the body back on track in the short run and provide a framework for long-term care.
Natural Remedies for Anemia in Dogs
Your dog’s body needs nutrients to create healthy blood cells. The deficiency of nutrients, such as copper, B vitamins, and iron, can lead to anemia. If you supplement their diet with additional supplements, you can help your dog rebuild his blood cells naturally. Herbs, such as Cleavers, Dandelion, and Fenugreek, may help solve minor canine anemia issues.