Has your pet ever needed blood collection at the vet for any reason? Whether it’s blood work for safety purposes prior to an anesthetic or routine senior wellness or because your pet isn’t feeling well and we need more information, your dog, cat, rabbit, bird, reptile, etc may need to have a blood sample taken at some point in their life. Have you ever wondered….. How do we collect a blood sample from your pet?
Collecting blood from animals is very different from human blood collection. Though it would be convenient if we could, we can’t ask your dog to sit still in a chair while we draw a sample. In order for us to safely and effectively collect a blood sample from your pet, we require gentle handling/restraint by an assistant while our veterinarian or registered animal health technologist draws a sample. Regardless of the species, pets need to be gently restrained during any procedure, including venipuncture (blood drawing).
Restraint involves careful control of your pet’s head and body and it usually involves the assistant acting as both a tourniquet (before and during the procedure) and a band-aid (after the procedure). Instead of using an elastic band like in human collection, we use gentle hand-held pressure near the point of collection. When our Vet or RAHT has successfully drawn a sample and the procedure is complete, we apply gentle pressure to the site in order to aid in clotting – this typically takes a minute or two. Did you know? There are a variety of different locations that we can collect from and it can vary between species.
Collection can be taken from the jugular vein (neck), cephalic (forearm) or lateral saphenous (outer hind leg)
Collection can be taken from the jugular vein (neck), cephalic (forearm) or medial saphenous (inner hind leg)
Collection can be taken from the jugular vein (neck), cephalic (forearm), marginal vein (ear) or lateral saphenous (outer hind leg)
Collection can be taken from the jugular vein (neck), basilic vein (wing) or medial metatarsal vein (inner leg)
Collection can be taken from the jugular vein (neck) or ventral coccygeal vein (under the tail)