Blood transfusion saves Collie with grapefruit-sized tumour

A leading Yorkshire vet centre is calling on dog owners to sign their pets up as blood donors after carrying out life-saving surgery on a Collie which had a tumour the size of grapefruit on its liver.

Paragon Veterinary Referrals, in Wakefield, is issuing the call after saving the life of 10-year-old Jess, who had been referred to the £5 million centre from her local vets after owner Mark Dixon spotted she had lost weight and been drinking more than usual.

Following an ultrasound, internal medic at Paragon, Adam Bell, discovered Jess had a tumour on her liver which measured around 14cm by 10cm – the size of a large grapefruit or small football – and, if not treated, would have had just three to six months to live.

After being given the green light by Mark to carry out the complicated procedure to remove the growth, Jess required a blood transfusion which was immediately given thanks to Paragon being able to call upon a stock of the correct type blood.

Now, Mickey Tivers, head of surgery at Paragon, which opened its doors on Paragon Business Park in February 2018, is urging dog owners to sign their pets up to donate life-saving blood.

Mickey said: “Jess’s surgery was complicated and there was a risk of haemorrhage due to the complexity of the operation. It all went very well but, as we anticipated, Jess suffered a bleed, so needed a transfusion straight away.

“This sort of situation really highlights the importance of people registering their dogs to give blood. We need to know we can immediately give a transfusion to a patient should one be needed.

“Jess is now making a great recovery and we’re all delighted she’s back to her normal self.”

Mark, from east Yorkshire, said: “Without Paragon, and without that blood being available, we wouldn’t still have Jess. We are unbelievably grateful.

“Paragon and our local vets Aldgate Veterinary Practice worked brilliantly together.

“Thankfully, Jess is now on the mend and we’re so grateful to still have her with us. I would urge all dog owners to register their pets to give blood.

“We never imagined we would find ourselves in the situation where our dog’s life depended on blood from another dog – now we know just how vital it is.”

To donate, dogs must be fit and healthy, between one and eight years old, weigh more than 25kg, have a good temperament, have never been abroad, be fully vaccinated and not on any medication.