Canine Cephalic Vein Blood Collection

Hi, I’m Joanie and today we’re going to talk about how to draw blood from a cephalic vein. The cephalic veins run along the top of the forelegs. You can see them in this dog here that they run just right there. We usually try to reserve these veins for IV catheters, but in some patients we’ll use those veins. Usually it’s a patient that’s a little bit more excitable, a little bit hesitant about restraint or a patient that we don’t need this, we aren’t going to need a place an IV catheter. This patient, we’re just doing some screening blood work so we aren’t going to be placing a catheter today, we’re just going to be sending out blood work so she’s going to be a quick easy place to draw some blood. So I have my syringe, my blood tubes, and my band-aid, and my lovely restrainer and we are going to try and position so that I can get a nice look at the vein. She’s going to hold off the vein while rolling outward so that it kind of puts the vein along the top of the leg. When I wet the vein with alcohol you can really see it start to pop up right there. I’m going to put my thumb alongside the vein so I know where it is. I’m going to have my syringe bevel up and insert it into the vein and draw back. It can help to put a little bit of pressure on the paw, kind of give it a squeeze. It can help the blood flow through that vein so that you can get a little bit extra or a little bit faster into your syringe. Okay, and when I’m done, she’s going to let up and I’m going to pull out. I’m going to put on my bandage and then I can put my blood into my tubes. And that’s how we draw blood from a cephalic vein here at Dove Lewis.

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