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Hyundai Motor and Konkuk University open very first canine blood donation center in Asia Updated: 2022-08-19 10:46:57 KST

And here's some heartwarming news for our furry friends out there.
South Korea has opened Asia's first canine blood donation center.
My colleague Kim Bo-kyoung has details.

Blood donor dogs.
They're dogs that are raised specifically to donate blood and are kept in small, dirty cages.
Unethical, but banning donor dog breeding was difficult as almost 90-percent of blood packs needed for sick dogs came from them.
Some pet owners and organizations have long been working together to establish a voluntary blood donation system.
But, a central control tower to oversee everything was still needed.
Until now, with help from Hyundai Motor, Konkuk University's "Canine Blood Donation Center" held its opening ceremony on Thursday.


"Going beyond the pride that we're the first in Asia, establishing a blood donation center is significant because we've taken a firm step in supporting the important value of spreading awareness of pet blood donation not breeding donor dogs solely for that purpose."

Inside the center, there's an area for owners to bring their dogs for a check-up and labs where vets can separate plasma from red blood cells for dogs that need it.
The rooftop even provides a place for dogs to play and get rid of any stress before and after the donation process.
The center also has the country's very first "pet ambulance".


"Pet owners usually have to take their pets to the vets by themselves, even when they have serious conditions. And that means the pets can't get any first aid on the way. Now, this ambulance can treat pets during the 'golden time' and safely bring them to hospital."

There's also an intensive care unit inside along with oxygen tanks in case there are dogs that need urgent attention.
Konkuk University is at the forefront of such efforts for now, but South Korean lawmakers want more animal hospitals to follow suit and have promised to support such efforts.


"Based on the blood center's goals to set an ethical pet blood donation system while securing high-quality blood, and build a nationwide blood supply chain, we expect the center to play a big role not just in South Korea but in Asia as well."


"We hope to see centers like these at other hospitals too and to do that, we lawmakers and the government will jointly think about how we can provide support so that the center could be an example for the rest of the world to follow."

The aim is for all dogs that need blood transfusions to be to get them with blood that was donated voluntarily, and this center is one step closer toward that vision.
Kim Bo-kyoung, Arirang News.
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