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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Lucky Luna and Her Doggy Donors

The staff at Fort Thomas Animal Hospital on South Fort Thomas Avenue is notoriously friendly and helpful. And not just the human staff. A few members of the canine staff at the hospital helped to save Luna, a ten-year-old yellow lab owned and loved by Tim Acri at the end of March.

Acri noticed that she was acting very lethargic and had unusually strong gas, and upon trying to pull her outside with her collar, he saw blood from her nose, mouth, and rear.  He immediately took her to the Greater Cincinnati Veterinary Emergency Services in Wilder where she was diagnosed with internal bleeding and anemia due to probable anti-coagulant rat poisoning ingestion. This type of poison prevents the blood from clotting.

“I thought she had eaten a bird or mouse, and had an upset stomach,” Acri said. “When I saw the blood coming out everywhere, I realized it was something way worse.”

Acri had recently moved into what had previously been a rental property, and was did not know there was rat poison accessible to his dogs.

When he arrived at the emergency room, he said that Luna was essentially dead. “She was flopped over, just barely breathing,” he said.

After a long night of blood and plasma transfusions at the emergency room in Wilder, Acri took Luna to the the Fort Thomas Animal Hospital for further monitoring. Dr. Turner, one of the veterinarians on staff at the hospital saw that Luna’s condition had decreased, and determined that Luna would need another blood transfusion to survive. He turned to Scooby and Monty, two of the staff’s dogs. Scooby, a five-year-old boxer is owned by Sarah Wood, the animal hospital’s receptionist and Monty is Dr. Jean’s 14-year-old lab mix.

Dr. Turner said that both dogs have been donors several times before Luna's incident.

The dogs were able to donate blood to raise Luna’s blood count. A transfusion between dogs happens occasionally for other anemic issues, Dr. Turner said.

“Transfusions are like humans, but the blood types are different,” he wrote in an email. “There are eight different blood groups for dogs, and like humans there are universal donors. We test our clinic dogs and find out which ones are universal donors, and use them when needed.”

Over the course of a week, Luna was under constant monitoring and continual blood transfusions.

“They didn’t have to work as hard as they did for her,” Acri said of the staff. “They stayed after hours for her. They had nurses…and vet techs monitoring her.”
It came to a point where Acri and the staff decided if the final transfusion didn’t raise her blood counts, they would stop.

“I made the decision that if she didn’t come out of it again and crashed again, we were going to put her down because it just wasn’t fair to her,” Acri said.

After a long week or ups and downs for the lab, Luna’s blood counts finally started rising, and she has been improving since then. 

"I can’t thank the vet clinic enough," Acri said. "Those two (Dr. Jean and Dr. Turner) are pretty amazing vets.”

Acri said that he will be giving her the last dose of her vitamins and taking her to the hospital for reevaluation in the final days. As for now, he said, she is back to her normal self and living up to her nickname “Luna-tic." 

From the staff of the Fort Thomas Animal Hospital: Be careful to keep rat and any other kind of poison away from your pets. They do taste good to your furry friends.

1 comment:

  1. They have been there for us with all of our pets' health concerns over the past 20 years. I love them!