Camelid owners and breeders are invited to attend our next Camelid Blood Drive on Wednesday 22nd February 2017 at Towcester Veterinary Centre’s Equine Clinic, Plum Park Farm.
If you’re wondering what a Camelid Blood Drive is and why we do it, please read on!
This event involves camelids (usually alpacas) coming in to the clinic for blood donation. Although the blood donors don’t get cups of tea or biscuits, they do contribute a life-saving resource, as the blood they donate is processed and spun down to harvest plasma. This plasma is vital in the successful treatment of failure of passive transfer (FPT) of immunity in crias. FPT happens when crias fail to drink enough of their mother’s colostrum in the first hours of life. This colostrum is rich in antibodies, and when the crias drink it the antibodies are absorbed across the gut to provide the
mainstay of the cria’s immunity until their own immune system gets up to speed after a few months old. Sadly this means that crias with FPT have a compromised immune system, and left untreated are very vulnerable to (potentially life-threatening) infections. Administering plasma (containing antibodies) to these crias is the only way of getting the all-important antibodies into the bloodstream to provide the protection they need.
The Camelid Blood Drives have been set up in response to the need to treat FPT crias with plasma and the difficulty many people have in sourcing it. So, if you are expecting crias in your herd this year and would like to have plasma on hand for any crias that need it, the Camelid Blood Drive is for you!