For Immediate Release:
February 8, 2024
Moira Colley 202-483-7382
Los Angeles – After an undercover PETA investigation found that animals kept captive at The Veterinarians’ Blood Bank (TVBB)—which says it supplies blood to locally based VCA Animal Hospital—were elderly, emaciated, sick, and denied adequate veterinary care, the Indiana State Board of Animal Health (BOAH) inspected the company and corroborated many of the group’s findings, including that more than 900 animals were confined to barren kennels and severely crowded pens for life and that their blood was drawn every three weeks.
During inspections of TVBB’s dog and cat facilities, BOAH veterinarian Dr. Jodi Lovejoy noted that animals were being bled more frequently and at ages much older than industry standards dictate—including senior animals as old as 11. She found dogs kept in rusty, barren kennels without bedding or solid surfaces as well as ones with hair loss, skin tags, and apparent pressure sores (likely from being forced to lie on hard kennel floors without any bedding for years) and that every dog whose teeth she examined had “moderate to severe” dental disease. As one of TVBB’s own customers, VCA Animal Hospitals, explains on its website, dental disease can lead to bacteria entering the bloodstream and traveling to “other areas within the body, causing distant or systemic effects”—meaning that animals at risk for infections in their bloodstream were still being bled, further imperiling the animals who would use that blood.
“The Veterinarians’ Blood Bank has denied sick and elderly animals both care and comfort, keeping them perpetually confined to barren kennels as they repeatedly take their blood and depriving them of the opportunity to know a home or family,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “PETA is calling on VCA Animal Hospital to immediately reconsider its relationship with this cruel operation and commit to obtaining blood only from healthy dogs and cats who live in homes and are volunteered for periodic blood donations by their loving guardians.”
Lovejoy also identified animals who appeared underweight and cats with eye discharge and serious dental problems. She photographed a whiteboard listing the names of more than a dozen cats in need of dental care—PETA’s eyewitness saw this list on August 1, 2023, and it included nine of the same names, meaning those nine cats had been denied dental care for nearly five months at the time of the inspection.
PETA’s video footage revealed that some animals being kept captive at the blood bank were emaciated; that many had pressure sores and growths from being forced to lie on hard floors without respite; that dogs were seen with wounds after being attacked by stressed kennelmates—including one who developed a deep infection of the skin and underlying tissue, causing a massive wound that still hadn’t healed seven weeks later; that cats with respiratory infections were still bled; and other atrocities. Even senior animals and those too small to be used for blood collection were warehoused indefinitely. As one worker said, they “stay here until they die.”
After being alerted to PETA’s findings, PetVet Care Centers dropped TVBB as a supplier of blood products to its veterinary hospitals. PETA has sent letters urging VCA Animal Hospitals, MedVet, BluePearl Pet Hospital, and Ethos Veterinary Health to obtain blood only from healthy dogs and cats who live in homes with loving families.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—points out that Every Animal Is Someone and offers free Empathy Kits for people who need a lesson in kindness. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, or Instagram.