WHEAT RIDGE – And yes, the supply is low. But donating doesn’t take much work and you may save money on some routine blood work and physical exams your dog needs.

The Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital runs a blood bank out of its facility on 44th Avenue and Kipling. Owners drop their dogs off for about an hour. The blood draw only takes a few minutes but the animals hang out for a bit so veterinarians can make sure they’re feeling well enough to go home.

Chap Pratt, veterinary critical care specialist at the hospital, said one donation can save multiple lives – but they don’t have anywhere near enough donors. In some areas, it could take weeks to receive a blood transfusion. That’s simply not fast enough in many situations.

“Currently we only have about a third of our targeted donors to really hit the need not only within our own hospital but in surrounding hospitals,” said Pratt.

Dog owners know the cost of routine veterinarian visits add up. Being a donor means being healthy. So the blood bank gives donor dogs regular physical exams and blood work.

“There’s no cost to the donors and, in fact, we do offer a little bit of incentive; because we really do want these guys to stay and remain in exceptional health,” said Pratt.

Canine blood donors must:

-Weigh over 55lbs
-Be between one and six years old
-Have a friendly disposition
-Be in good health
-Be current on vaccinations
-have medications approved by a veterinarian
-have never received a blood transfusion

To schedule a donor screening, call the Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital at 303-424-3325 or email wrahbloodbank@ethosvet.com

© 2017 KUSA-TV

Ryan Haarer, KUSA 5:31 PM. MST November 15, 2017