By Luke Kenton and Jack Williams
This dog may be an Irish setter, but a BLOODHOUND might be more apt – as he has donated enough blood to save more than 180 DOGS in the process.
Lovable Klancie has donated more than 45 pints of blood over his seven years of service, meaning he could potentially be one of, if not the, most generous blood donor dogs in the United States currently active.
Blue Ridge Veterinary Associates, which oversees a large number of such donations and shipments across the country, says he is there current champ when it comes to figures.
Klancie lives with his owners, sisters Karla and Karen Stefansson, in Annapolis, Baltimore, and he first gave blood when he was just 10 months old, in February 2011.
Jocelyn Pratt, operations director for BRVBB, said: “Klancie and his owners – who also have another dog in the program – have given their time and travel selflessly in the pursuit of saving other dogs.
“Without Klancie’s donations, along with all of our wonderful donors, there would be many dogs that would not have had life-saving blood products available.
“There are many times throughout the year where all of the canine blood banks are on back order for blood products, even for emergencies.
“The more committed donors we have, the less the pressure of trying to find blood when a dog is in critical need.”
The blood collected from Klancie and more than 300 other dogs in the BRVBB program helps the dogs impacted from emergencies, such as hurricanes and wild fires.
It also helps those that have suffered from anemia, snake bites, rat poison ingestion, heat stroke, cancer, or that have lost massive amounts of blood in accidents, for example.
Karla, 67, and Karen, 65, take 8-year-old Klancie to donate every six weeks, along with his younger brother, FyrBear, a golden retriever.
Karen, who takes the pair to Hoffman Animal Hospital, Annapolis, to donate, said: “Klancie is the calmest, sweetest, gentlest and kindest boy.
“He and FyrBear love donating blood so much they can’t wait to do it.
“They race to get into the room where the donations take place.
“The procedure is painless, quick, and the boys get peanut butter and string cheese.”
Klancie will continue donating blood until he turns 9 – the limit on how old a dog can be to donate as part of the program.
The blood collected from Klancie and others by BRVBB, which has 20 different locations, is then delivered locally and nationally to dogs in need.
By telling Klancie’s story, the Stefansson’s hope others will be encouraged to follow in the Irish setter’s pawsteps when he hangs up his bloodbag.
Karen said: “It makes us feel great knowing that Klancie and his brother FyrBear are donating to help save other dogs’ lives, and they hope that their story will get the word out for other owners to get their dogs in to donate as well.
“Blood donation by humans and dogs is life giving.”