Senator Scott Wilk of the 21st district.

Canine donor bill passes Senate

State Sen. Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, announced Tuesday his “doggy donor bill,” which seeks to modernize animal-blood donation laws, cleared the Senate.

Senate Bill 202 is legislation that seeks to allow the commercial use of animal blood from community-sourced donors. If signed by the governor, the bill would permit privately owned animals to donate blood under the oversight of a licensed veterinarian, which would guarantee a healthy supply of blood when other animals need it, Wilk said, mentioning this is not too different from how humans donate blood.

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, Wilk previously said. As a result, veterinarians are running out of blood to use in their practices when an animal is in need.

Wilk has also been vocal about how California only allows for the commercial licensing of closed-colony blood banks, which keep dogs and cats caged on premises for years on end to give blood.

“California’s shortage of available blood for animals in need is putting our pets’ lives in danger,” Wilk said in a news release Tuesday. “SB 202 allows community animals – like those you or I own – to donate blood. This common-sense measure will increase the blood supply and ensure the health and happiness of pets everywhere. It is a compassionate solution to our woefully inadequate supply of animal blood.”

Wilk added in Tuesday’s release that he was thankful to his colleagues in the Senate for supporting the bill.

“I look forward to continuing this work to benefit the lives of beloved animals in our communities,” he said, mentioning the bill now moves to the Assembly for consideration.

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