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Wednesday, 16 April 2014

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Carlisle woman's stricken terrier saved - by blood transfusion from greyhound

Blue the greyhound and Bam Bam the terrier may look very different but the unlikely pair share a bond that’s deeper than the eye can see.

Two dogs photo
Bam Bam, left and Blue

When little Bam Bam was struck down with a life-threatening blood condition it was Blue who came to his aid with a vital transfusion.

The rescue dog, who is being cared for by charity Dumfriesshire and Cumbria Greyhound Rescue, was drafted in by vet Holly Bateson at Craig Robinson’s practice in Carlisle when 13-year-old Jack Russell Bam Bam suddenly fell ill last Tuesday.

One week on – thanks to Blue and lots of tender loving care from owners the Brecken family – Bam Bam has made a miraculous recovery.

Al Todd, volunteer rehoming co-ordinator for Greyhound Rescue, is hoping that Blue’s good turn might earn the “laid-back lad” a loving home.

Mr Todd added: “It doesn’t happen very often but we have been called on before when dogs need blood transfusions.

“Greyhounds are thought to be good blood donors because their veins are close to the skin and they are quite easygoing”.

The emergency call for Blue’s help came last Thursday after worried owner Cynthia Brecken took Bam Bam to the surgery when he collapsed at home.

Mrs Brecken, from Nelson Street in Carlisle, said: “He was in a bad way and his stomach was also swollen so we rushed him into the vet. We then got a call to say that he would need an emergency operation and that they thought he had a tumour.”

When vet Holly Bateman opened up the dog up she noticed his spleen, liver and gal bladder were enlarged.

Mr Brecken added: “The vet said that Bam Bam’s white blood cells were killing the red cells and said they could give him a transfusion. We agreed and thought this was his last chance.”

She added: “I had no idea where the blood was coming from and wondered if there was a bank or something.

“When we turned up at the surgery we could see little Bam Bam on his side all hooked up to the machinery and there was this beautiful big greyhound standing near him.

“I though he was also in for treatment or something and then the vet said ‘you’ve got him to thank for this’. I looked at my daughter and we couldn’t believe it. I will never forget the site of Bam Bam lying there and this big majestic dog standing over him.”

The Brecken family took their beloved pet home to join their other three dogs on Friday.

“He is a different boy now,” added Mrs Brecken.

“He is on steroids and we are keeping a close eye on him but he is doing very well, it is amazing.”

She added: “I would love to see Blue get a good home, he has done a wonderful job for us and we are very grateful.”

If you are interested in rehoming Blue contact Al Todd on 01228 674127.

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