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Blood Preparation

The following instructions are for preparing blood for blood tracking work in accordance with the JGHV regulations. Regulations prohibit any additives to the blood and must be from domestic stock (cattle, sheep, pigs) or wild game. Blood is allowed to be frozen while fresh. We normally use cattle blood for our training.
These photos were taken on a day that we processed enough blood for roughly 100 tracks(about 7 gallons). If you get smaller amounts (approximately 1 gallon or less) you can pour directly from the container into the blender and eliminate using the mortar mixer. Each gallon of blood processed will lay about 15 tracks. I recommend storing the blood in .5 liter bottles which you can easily freeze. Each of these .5 liter bottles contains enough blood for 2 tracks. This eliminates having to thaw out larger quantities each time you want to prepare a track. If you freeze the blood in larger containers you can thaw it out and pour into small bottles and then refreeze the small bottles without any adverse effect on the blood. If you are planning to process blood, I recommend that you start collecting small bottles well in advance as it seems like you never have enough of them on hand to accommodate all of the blood collected.
Finding a source for your blood varies by location. I suggest trying local butcher shops in your area. Take printed information with you when you go so you can educate the people what the blood is going to be used for. This will help you secure a reliable supply for future blood and possibly gain some interest in the dogs and their abilities in your area.
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Things needed: fresh blood, blender, funnel, jugs, water bottles (.5 liter), water hose and drill with mortar mixer (optional).
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Blood gathered from local butcher in 2½ gallon sealed bucket.
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Fresh blood.
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Step 1: Insert the mortar mixer and start mixing very slowly, continue…

 

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to mix blood with the mortar mixer to break up the clot.

 

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the more the clot is broken down the easier it will be to handle in the next steps.

 

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Step 2: Once well mixed , pour into the blender. Be careful not to pour any of the foamy top into the blender.

 

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Step 3: Blend on high speed for several minutes to break up any small clots.

 

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Step 4: Have bottles ready and prepared to transer from the blender to the large bottles.

 

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As you fill the jug(s) with blood, a foam will develop on top of the blood.

 

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You can see the foam build-up in this photo. I like the shape of this bottle as it traps most of the foam when transferring to the smaller bottle. Filling the smaller bottle from the larger one reduces the foam build-up in the small bottle. Once there is too much foam in the large bottle, simply rinse it out with water and start over.

 

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The job is much easier with 2 or more people to help!

 

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Step 5: Transfer the blood to the smaller bottles. Pour only the blood and not the foam. The shape of the large jug will trap most of the foam from pouring into the smaller bottle.

 

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To speed up the process run the blender while transferring the blood from the large to the small bottles.

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Several jugs filled and ready to pour into small bottles.

 

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Properly filled bottles contain very little foam.

 

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Step 6: Finished blood can be stored in both large and small containers. Freeze immediately after processing to ensure freshness.

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