A Tech Draws Blood With a Quick Squeeze and Prick

Although your kitty probably won’t like his blood being taken, he won’t suffer any major discomfort — just a squeeze, a prick and perhaps a little stress, mostly from being restrained.

Depending on your cat’s age and size, the blood will be taken from a vein either on the front of a front leg, the large jugular vein in the neck or a vein on the inside of the upper thigh.

The area may be clipped to allow better visualization. A technician applies a sterilizing agent — usually alcohol — and then manually compresses the vein on the leg to cause it to become enlarged and easier to access. A small needle with a plastic syringe is gently but firmly slipped into the vein and a plunger pulled, drawing the blood into the tube.

The collected sample is placed into an automated analyzing machine that determines the counts and percentage of measurements using laser light, electrical current and other processes. The results? They’re usually ready in minutes.