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June 18, 2013 > Blood donor dogs are more than man's best friend

Blood donor dogs are more than man's best friend

By Kevin Wang, Associated Press

MADISON, Wis. (AP), Apr 19 - Dogs always have been known as loyal companions to humans. These days, they're increasingly helping each other - by giving their blood.

Rising demand is causing places like the University of Wisconsin-Madison's veterinary teaching hospital to seek more dog and cat blood donors.

Six years ago, they had three donors. Now they have about 22 dogs and cats who give blood regularly.

Dr. Jonathan Bach, who oversees the hospital's blood bank, says demand has grown along with pet owners' willingness to give a high level of care to their animals.

The donors are sometimes former patients themselves. But most often, they're companions to students or staff members.

Animals most often need the blood because of anemia, although the hospital does get animals who have suffered injuries or accidental poisonings.

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