|Macy and Rory|
(Scroll down for video) A cat is alive today because a dog’s blood was used for a blood transfusion after the cat ate rat poison, according to a veterinarian.
A dog may be man's best friend, but a Tauranga Labrador has made a greater sacrifice for its arch-enemy.
Macy the dog saved the life of Rory the cat with a blood donation. The cat is in perfect health now, but three weeks ago Rory urgently needed blood after eating rat poison.
"The cat was dying. We did not have time for the cat's blood to arrive," Rory’s owner Kim Edwards said.
It was Friday night and there were no laboratories open to check its blood type, not to mention getting supplies. So veterinarian Kate Heller sought advice and was told to try dog blood.
"I had not heard about it or read about it. It is not in any textbook," Heller said.
Rory needed a quick donor. So Edwards thought quickly and called a friend in her book club.
"I had never heard of anything like this before. I thought it was a joke," the owner of Macy, Michelle Whitemore, said.
Rory desperately needed the 18-month-old Labrador. Macy was rushed to the vet, where it donated 120 ml of blood, and within an hour Rory saved the cat.
"It was one of those situations that it was do-or-die. The cat would have died if we did nothing," Heller said.
It may sound weird, but it's science. Cats do not have the same blood antibodies like dogs, so a transfusion can buy enough time for the cat to regenerate its own red blood cells. Only one transfusion can be done because a second dose of dog blood would spell the death of the cat.
"The cat is not going out to get the newspaper, it is not peeing on utility poles or barking yet. He is just the normal cat we had before, playful and friendly," Edwards said.