SACRAMENTO – Senator Scott Wilk, representing the 21st Senate District, announces Senate Bill 202 (SB 202) unanimously passed the Legislature. SB 202 will expand the available commercial animal blood donor pool to include community-sourced donors.
“We are now only a signature away from saving pets’ lives. SB 202 allows community animals – like Governor Newsom’s dog, Max, or my two pups, AV and Simi - to donate blood. California currently has a woefully inadequate supply of animal blood and SB 202 will make a real difference when our pets are in need.”
A robust blood supply is necessary to save animal lives in cases of serious injury, illness or disease; but because of the restrictive nature of California’s regulatory laws on animal blood donation, there are currently only two commercial blood banks in the state. As a result, veterinarians are running out of blood to use in their practices when an animal is in need.
SB 202 allows privately owned animals to donate blood under the oversight of a licensed veterinarian in order to guarantee a healthy supply of blood when other animals need it – not too differently from how people give blood.
“Increasing the amount of blood in the donor system will save pets’ lives. I’m thankful to my colleagues for their support on this critical issue,” said Wilk. “When the governor looks at Max, I hope he will see the importance of signing this bill into law. Our pets are like family members and to lose your dog or cat because of a lack of available blood – a totally preventable situation - would be heartbreaking.”
SB 202 has support from many in the animal rights and the veterinary communities. Social Compassion in Legislation is the sponsor of this legislation. The California Veterinary Medical Association and the California Veterinary Medical Board are also in support of the bill.