5 Tips For Taking Your Pets Poop Sample To The Vet

Taking your pets poop into the vet with them as part of their yearly checkup is an essential part of your pets healthcare plan. Some people may think otherwise but keep in mind that any pet at any age is at risk for getting parasites and a lot of these parasites can be transmitted to humans.

Having your pets poop sample checked 1-2 times a year is part of being a responsible pet owner.

But when, where and how do you get that poop sample successfully to the vets office?

Have no fear, that’s why Jen is here!

Here are my 5 tips on getting that all important stool sample to your vet!

1. The fresher the better. If your dogs poop has been sitting out in the back yard for 3 days, leave it there. A 3 day poop sample is not very diagnostic.  The same goes for cat poop.  A cat poop that has been sitting in the litter box for 3 days and is severely dehydrated, you know, it cracks like a stick,  is not a good sample.

2. Storage is key. If your pet has an appointment in the afternoon but only poops in the morning, that’s o.k. You can store it in your fridge, or in cooler weather, outside. Do not store it in the freezer or leave it baking in the hot sun, and for pete’s sake, do not leave it in your car.

3. Bigger is not better. Most vets and labs only need a small amount of poop to run a fecal sample. About the size of 2 sugar cubes. (double check with your vet just to be sure) You do not need to bring the whole pile of poop.

 

4. Pick your container wisely. Most vet offices should have fecal containers for you to take home and collect a sample. Other containers that work well are old pill bottles, or plastic containers. Containers that do not work well are ziploc bags-poop smashes easily. Grocery bags-leak and there is way too much room for the poop to move around and I have to stick my hand in there.(with gloves on of course) Aluminum foil works well for cat poop but not so much for dog poop-again, fresh poop smashes easily. Paper towels do not work well for obvious reasons. Poop bags are awesome but………..if you tie them with a knot at the top I can’t get into it!

5. Make sure you’re bringing poop. A clump of kitty urine is not going to be checked for parasites. A pile of mud may look like poop, but it is not. A stick covered in poop will be rejected. A pile of leaves with a little poop=not gonna happen.

Do you have any other tips to add? Maybe some secrets you are keeping about how you get your dogs poop to the vet? Please share!

 

 

 

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35 Comments on 5 Tips For Taking Your Pets Poop Sample To The Vet

  1. bichonpawz
    October 16, 2012 at 2:14 am (2 years ago)

    Thank you for the tips Jen! Awesome!!

    Reply
  2. Daisy
    October 16, 2012 at 3:24 am (2 years ago)

    Interesting…..

    XXXOOO Daisy, Bella & Roxy

    Reply
  3. emma
    October 16, 2012 at 7:07 am (2 years ago)

    This post stinks ;) No, seriously, good tips!

    Reply
  4. olivia Rubin
    October 16, 2012 at 7:28 am (2 years ago)

    I go to,the salad bar or deli and ask for a plastic container at my supermarket.

    Reply
  5. Finn
    October 16, 2012 at 9:01 am (2 years ago)

    BOL! This is good because we are going on Sunday with a sample! I am glad bigger isn’t better because I always bring a big bunch and now I know better!

    Reply
  6. Pamela | Something Wagging This Way Comes
    October 16, 2012 at 9:10 am (2 years ago)

    I love your reminder to bring a small sample. I remember James Herriot writing in one of his books that the farmers took delight in bringing the biggest samples they could from their cattle or pigs. :)

    Reply
  7. Sam
    October 16, 2012 at 9:22 am (2 years ago)

    We’ve never had much of a problem with the poop samples – my favorite are the pee samples. There is nothing like following your dog around with a soup ladel…

    Sam

    Reply
  8. Sam
    October 16, 2012 at 9:23 am (2 years ago)

    Sigh… ladle…

    Sam :D

    Reply
  9. Kimberly, The Fur Mom
    October 16, 2012 at 9:43 am (2 years ago)

    I’ve been able to pick up poo in a poop bag and store it on the porch (cool weather) until the vet appointment. The only bummer is that if your vet doesn’t have the proper tests, you can get a false positive (or negative) which we experienced.

    It’s funny that when it comes to other dogs, the idea of picking up their poop is gross, not with our dogs. It’s not a day in the park, but it’s not terrible either.

    Reply
  10. Jodi
    October 16, 2012 at 10:11 am (2 years ago)

    OMG you are busting my gut this week. “it cracks like a stick?” LOL I (as you know) am a rule breaker. Yes, yes I am. I take the poop in the zip lock baggie, only because I had never thought to stick it in an old pill bottle, but now you’ve told me, I’m on the case.;-)

    Reply
  11. Taryn
    October 16, 2012 at 10:54 am (2 years ago)

    I think you pretty well covered it :-)

    Reply
  12. Blueberry's human
    October 16, 2012 at 11:15 am (2 years ago)

    I always use a plastic container too. Usually what I do is take a plastic spoon and knife and cut out the top portion of the poo that hasn’t touched the ground so it doesn’t have any debris in it. I am grateful I have a block fence so my neighbors don’t see me in my yard looking like I’m about ready to feast on some dog poop. And yes I usually store it in the fridge if the appointment isn’t right away. Great tips – glad to know I am doing things correctly! :)

    Reply
  13. caren gittleman
    October 16, 2012 at 11:17 am (2 years ago)

    I never realized that such a small amount of poop would be enough! This is quite timely because we will be bringing Cody and Dakota’s poop in for their annual fecal exam at the end of October :)

    Reply
  14. Nichole
    October 16, 2012 at 11:24 am (2 years ago)

    I’m LOLing about your #3… so true! :) I had no idea ziplock bags weren’t a good thing though… we’ve always used them when we didn’t have the little poop containers from the vet’s office, and they’ve never suggested otherwise. hmm… We do have many old pill bottles though!

    Reply
  15. Corbin
    October 16, 2012 at 11:54 am (2 years ago)

    I’m not quite sure why, but this post had the momma laughing hysterically… maybe her immature side giggling at all the mentions of the word “poop?”
    -Corbin

    Reply
  16. 2 brown dawgs
    October 16, 2012 at 1:19 pm (2 years ago)

    Such useful tips. :) I have always used ziploc bags and our vet has never had an issue with it. Of course we try not to smash. ;)

    Reply
  17. Gina@dawsondogs.com
    October 16, 2012 at 3:12 pm (2 years ago)

    Only with dogs and kids does the conversation always ends up to be about poop. BOL.

    Reply
  18. Jen
    October 16, 2012 at 5:08 pm (2 years ago)

    Nobody’s ever said anything to me at my vet’s office about the proper storage and comportment of poop samples. I wish they had! I knew there had to be a “right” or “more right” way, but there it is.

    *knock wood* I have never had to bring a urine sample. I hope I never have to.

    Reply
  19. Flea
    October 16, 2012 at 5:33 pm (2 years ago)

    Okay. So. Smashed poop is bad. And store poop in the fridge. Uh huh. Check.

    Did you know that humans have their poop checked after age 40? True story. Don’t ask me how I know.

    Reply
  20. kristi
    October 16, 2012 at 8:46 pm (2 years ago)

    Once again, your wealth of information never ceases to amaze me…sigh, I just had to wipe the tear from my eye;)

    Reply
  21. dawn
    October 16, 2012 at 10:16 pm (2 years ago)

    Great tips! I love the size recommendation.:>) I think people thought we were back there rooting through the poop with our hands looking for worms. I certainly didn’t get paid enough for that.

    Reply
  22. KB
    October 17, 2012 at 12:23 am (2 years ago)

    Ruh roh, we break one of your rules every single time. We use a zip-lock bag. I will ask them for a sample container to keep on hand the next time that I’m there (which seems to be weekly…).

    Thanks for the great suggestions! I always love that moment of walking into the vet’s office and plopping the “sample” down on the counter… Hah! Poor receptionists.

    Reply
  23. Karen Friesecke
    October 17, 2012 at 3:09 am (2 years ago)

    But I WANT to bring my entire pile of smelly poop to the vet :D
    Thanks for the tips!!

    Reply
  24. houndstooth
    October 17, 2012 at 10:11 am (2 years ago)

    You’ve got some great tips, and I guess I’m lucky, because ours are just about guaranteed to leave a fresh deposit right outside the vet’s office!

    Reply
  25. Ann Paws
    October 18, 2012 at 9:50 pm (2 years ago)

    Great post! THANK YOU for telling people that bigger is not better!!! I am a vet tech, and we used to get the HUGEST samples that would stink up the whole clinic lol. People would cram the containers until they were practically overflowing with fecal material.

    Reply
  26. Tylersat99
    February 19, 2013 at 1:46 am (2 years ago)

    Just on the light side, Lexie and Mica do not like for you to watch them go to the bathroom. They will try to move to a spot in the yard they hope you can’t see. I therefore let them out and watch out the back window. They rarely go at the same time or place which makes it pretty to see where they go and sneak out a few minutes later and get some!

    Reply
    • Jen
      February 19, 2013 at 7:20 am (2 years ago)

      Lol. Sherman is the same way!

      Reply
  27. Tylersat99
    February 19, 2013 at 1:51 am (2 years ago)

    Btw why is smashed poop worse that trying to dig those tiny spoonfuls out of a Newfy pile? I never feel like I got the right spot?

    Reply
  28. Grant
    July 23, 2013 at 7:54 am (1 year ago)

    Very good tips and you gave No-no’s in detail! Nice one.

    Reply
  29. sharon
    December 30, 2013 at 7:50 pm (11 months ago)

    Just an editing note: #5: ‘your’…. correct to: “You’re”

    Reply
  30. Loosgoose
    January 13, 2014 at 7:14 pm (10 months ago)

    If you’re running a website, you should know the difference of YOUR and YOURE.

    ****I allowed this stupid comment through because it’s hilarious. If you feel the need to correct someone, do it right.

    Reply
  31. Vet Tips
    March 13, 2014 at 2:26 pm (9 months ago)

    Great post! Been reading a lot about different tips for taking my pet to the vet. Thanks for the info!
    Vet Tips recently posted…Belle Dog of Month: March 2014My Profile

    Reply
  32. Tonka's Mom
    February 19, 2014 at 7:54 am (9 months ago)

    Thanks for the helpful tips. I smiled when I saw your site in my Google search because I’m prepping to take my own brown newfie to the vet tomorrow. :)

    Reply

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