In Florida a cat named Buttercup has been saved by what’s known as a xenotransfusion; when you take blood from one species and use it in another. This is a very rare example of this type of procedure and Buttercup is only the 62nd cat to ever have it.
Buttercup’s owner brought her to the vet after she showed signs of lethargy. The cat was diagnosed as anemic; meaning her red blood cell count was down and she needed a transfusion. However, cat blood wasn’t on hand and they were told that it would be a few days until it could be. They did have dog blood though, and so it was decided that Buttercup would receive dog blood.
The name of the vet is Dr. Sean Perry who said the procedure can only take place once. Blood contains antibodies, which are proteins responsible for recognizing and removing foreign cells. Buttercup didn’t have the antibodies to recognize the dog blood as foreign, however she will develop them as time goes on. If dog blood were to be reintroduced, the immune system would “attack” it.
Buttercup is taking steroids and antibiotics and has been far more active since the operation. She’s mounting a steady recovery; Buttercup’s owner also learned that day that Buttercup is, in fact, a male.