When Fluffy and Fido need surgery or transfusions, their humans have other worries besides where the blood comes from.
But state lawmakers are doing the worrying for them, trying to sort out exactly which canines should be allowed to donate blood and which shouldn’t.
Currently, most blood products used in veterinary medicine come from California, where dueling doggie blood bank bills have emerged to confront “closed colonies,” where animals are kept confined and bled at regular intervals before they are put up for adoption.
Many of those animals are greyhounds who’ve spent arduous years racing. They’re either “donors” or “blood slaves,” depending on one’s point of view, and the sale of their blood products is a multimillion-dollar industry that affects pet welfare nationwide.
The dueling bills in Sacramento present two options: evolution or revolution.
Assembly Bill 366, by Assemblyman Richard Bloom, D-Santa Monica, would outlaw closed-colony blood banks in California by 2022 and instead allow voluntary, community-based donations from dogs that live at home with their humans.