Why We Started The Veg Blood Bank

Why We Started the VEG Blood Bank

Veterinary Emergency Group

Feb 12, 2024

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VEG emergency pet hospitals are popping up here, there, and everywhere! As we continue to open more ER across the U.S., we’re discovering new ways to best serve our communities. One constant we’ve seen across the country is the need for canine blood and blood products. So, we did something about it. We launched the VEG Blood Bank.

There are so many reasons why we started a canine blood bank, and we’re excited to share our thoughts on this! It’s become a true win-win from all perspectives, within and outside of our hospitals.

Our Blood Bank Director, Jessie Brown, LVT, shared some facts that pet lovers should know:

  • The donation process is safe and held to high ethical standards. Members of our staff, including the program’s Director Jessie Brown, volunteer their own dogs for blood donation.
  • There is a strain on the small number of commercial veterinary blood bank vendors. This has led to a waiting list and a lack of consistent blood supply.
  • Red blood cell products expire every 35 days. Yep, new and repeat donors are always in need.
  • The VEG Blood Bank sets in motion a future where blood products are available wherever VEG has a footprint. Whenever the supply is there, if another hospital needs blood, we’ll be able to share!


Community, customers, and of course, patients!

As a company that thrives on helping, we’re now turning to our communities for help. We can’t do this without pet parents. More and more, we’re seeing heroes step up and volunteer their doggie do-gooders!

  • Pet parents who volunteer their dogs as blood donors can have confidence that they’re helping to save pet lives. To us VEGgies and to blood product recipients, these people and their dogs are heroes.
  • Meaningful connections throughout the community. Says Brown, “Think of the pet parents of dogs that can only survive through a blood transfusion. They’re incredibly grateful for this program and for the owners who sign their dogs up as donors. Each donation can save multiple pet lives and that’s nothing short of heroic!”
  • VEG’s place in the community. We love helping when there’s a great need. Our blood bank positions VEG as a helpful presence within each community we serve. And we couldn’t be more proud.

A helping hand to the veterinary industry

The need for blood is urgent in the veterinary community. Says Brown, “The veterinary community has expanded, which has put a strain on the small number of commercial vendors. This has led to a waiting list at most vendors, which means we do not have a steady supply of blood to our hospitals.”

Led by Brown, VEG is proving to have the talent, compassion, and enthusiasm to run a blood donation program to help solve the blood shortage for dogs. The VEG Blood Bank:

  • Positions VEG as a relied upon partner to our referring veterinarians
  • Supplies our hospitals with blood, which not only helps us—but with an ample supply, we remove all of our hospitals from the commercial vendor waiting list
  • Gets us closer to the day when VEG is off the waiting list, which will free up more blood products for the rest of the veterinary community

A victory for our VEGgies

For VEG, the blood bank is another extension of our aim to be the world’s veterinary company. Having available blood products falls in line with our company mission: helping people and their pets when they need us most.

For our staff aka VEGgies, our canine blood bank gives them a source of bragging rights to their friends! It has led to many positives, like:

  • Enhanced technical capabilities and people skills. Through specialized training, our VEGgies can now draw blood in their sleep. Okay, not really. But they’re so good at what they do, many times doggie donors are relaxed throughout the donation process.
  • We work closely with customers and walk them through the donation process every step of the way. This interaction has benefited our customers in seeing our VEGgies in a different light and in turn, our customers and patients are the heroic helpers alongside us!
  • In a field that can be mentally taxing, and has its share of ups and downs, taking part in blood collection increases our staff’s sense of hope. Running this program gives our frontliners another reason to love working at VEG. We’re truly making a difference, one donation at a time.
  • We take pride in knowing that our blood products are ethically sourced. And some of our VEGgies volunteer their own pets. Ask us about our program. We’re always excited to talk about how it works from start to finish…and how it helps!


You could say it’s in our VEGgie DNA to grow even better at what we do. It’s our job to save lives. Brown is quick to note, “If we don’t have blood products in our fridges/freezers, we can’t say yes to our customers and patients.”

So now we come to the part where we say: we’re looking for a new breed of heroes. If you’ve ever thought that it could be your dog in need, or you just want to make a difference in an animal’s life, blood donations are always needed and appreciated. Could your dog be a donor hero? See what it takes for your dog to donate blood and help save lives.