Saturday 19 October 2019

Dog reunited with life-saving donor

Bruno, left, and Max play together after being reunited
Bruno, left, and Max play together after being reunited

A dog has been reunited at Christmas with the canine hero that saved his life a year ago by donating blood.

Last December, Bruno the cocker spaniel had just hours to live when he was rushed into pet hospital.

The seven-year-old was fighting a life-threatening condition in which his healthy red blood cells were being destroyed by his white blood cells.

His only chance of survival was to quickly find a suitable blood donor at the veterinary charity PDSA's hospital in Blackpool, Lancashire.

"The odds of finding and getting the donor dog into the hospital for the transfusion within the short space of time we had were very much against us," said PDSA (the People's Dispensary for Sick Animals) senior vet Jennifer Jackson.

Luckily a suitable donor came forward in Max the labrador, that had an operation at the same hospital when he was younger to remove a blockage in his gut.

His owner, Luke McGarry, from Blackpool, wanted to repay the charity for their assistance then and allowed the four-year-old to give 250ml - just under half a pint - of blood to help Bruno fight back against the disease.

Ms Jackson said: "Max was a star patient, sitting quietly and still throughout. Half an hour after donating he was free to return home completely unaffected - apart from getting lots of fuss from the staff and his proud owner as well as a few well-deserved treats!"

Bruno's owner Stephen Metcalf, 50, from Blackpool, said: "I've had Bruno since he was eight weeks old and he is such a big softie. He had been lethargic and not himself, and when I noticed the blood in his urine I knew something was wrong so I took him to be checked out at PDSA. I was stunned when they told me what was wrong - it really came out of the blue.

"I can't thank Jennifer and PDSA enough. They are fantastic people and I can't express how grateful I am. I'm also indebted to Max and his owner Luke - if it wasn't for them, Bruno wouldn't be here today. His condition can come back at any time but I'm just glad for the extra time I've been given with him."

PA Media

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