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A "Paws for a Cause" benefit party to raise funds for a Great Lakes Veterinary Blood Bank will be sponsored by Lancaster Small Animal Hospital from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday in Protocol Restaurant, 6766 Transit Road, Williamsville.

The event will be a cocktail and hors d'oeuvres reception and a silent auction of items and services donated by local merchants.

Veterinarians at the small animal hospital note that although animal blood products are occasionally available in Western New York, there is no reliable supply. So they have taken steps to open a blood bank as a source of feline and canine blood for the Western New York area.

"We can save many pets just by having blood products available," said Dr. James Franzek, founder of the Lancaster hospital, "but we need financial assistance to get this started."

Tickets to the fund-raiser are $50 each and can be purchased at the hospital, 5156 Genesee St., Lancaster, or by calling 681-3033.