Did you know: the timing and method of urine collection is CRITICAL when processing samples.
We have proof!
To keep up with ever-changing technology, enhance client experience, and maintain/improve accuracy of test results, SBPH now has a new in-house lab machine called the SediVue that processes samples quickly, accurately and 100% the same every single time. What's even better: the cost to you will NOT go up with the addition of this wonderful new machine! Costs will stay the same but you will get your results much faster.
With the addition of this new machine, we had the ability to practice using it on our personal pets for free for 1 day only. The first sample we ran turned out to be an interesting case study on the importance of sample collection and processing.
We ran two samples on an employee pet with our new in-house machine and the results were very interesting! Samples were processed 100% the same.
Sample #1 (on the right): collected via free catch at home at 6:30am yesterday and processed at 12pm yesterday.
With no other factors considered, according to yesterday's test results this dog had a nasty UTI and maybe some other issues due to the presence of rod bacteria and crystals in the urine. The dog was/is not showing any symptoms and because we knew how long the urine "waited" prior to being processed, we knew it was important to rerun another sample (free within 24 hours!) to rule out artifacts and decomposition of the sample (i.e. bad sample).
Sample #2 (on the left): a sterile sample collected in clinic and ran within 5 minutes of collection. The sample ran today showed fairly normal urine and did not show signs of a UTI; there were no crystals nor bacteria present. The difference was two factors: 1. Collection method and 2. Amount of time stored prior to processing.
Moral of the story: urine can change and decompose fairly quickly which can/will alter test results.
As a pet parent, your role is important! To help us obtain the most accurate results possible we ask that you try to keep your pet from urinating 2 to 4 hours prior to their appointment so they will hopefully have a bladder full enough for a sterile collection. Or, if you need/want to obtain a sample at home, just keep it refrigerated and try to get it to us as soon as possible.
Now, we know this is not always possible nor easy! Here are a few tips/tricks/suggestions to help us obtain the best urine sample possible:
- Confine your pet to a smaller space such as a crate or bathroom; pets will not soil where they lay unless they feel they absolutely have to.
- For cats, remove litter boxes and textiles and confine to a smaller space
- Don't let your pet urinate on the way in - the smells outside can be very enticing!
- For smaller pets, carry them into the clinic
- Larger pets should be left in the car (if safe to do so) until someone is ready to collect the sample. In this case, please let us know you've arrived by either calling or stopping in and we'll have a technician obtain a sample as quickly as possible.
- Ask us for a sterile sample cup for urine collection at home - they're free!
- Just can't get a sample at home? Bring your pet to us, we have lots of tools and tricks to obtain samples.
- Click the following link for more ideas: How to Collect Urine Sample
- Give our office a call. We can come up with a personalized plan for you and your pet to obtain the best sample necessary for the testing desired.
If you ever have any questions or concerns about your pet for any reason, please do not hesitate to give our office a call and speak to one of our friendly and helpful technicians!
Healthy Pets & Happy Clients - SBPH