Fecal flotation? Urinalysis? Are those tests really that important?

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Fecal flotation? Urinalysis? Are those tests really that important?

April is our fecal & urinalysis month.

Fecal flotations allow veterinarians to check your pet for intestinal worms that can be harmful to them and some also for us.

Urinalysis is a test that can detect and assess a wide range of illnesses and diseases such as urinary tract infection, kidney disease, and diabetes.

Are they important? Yes! They are important! Even if your pet is not exhibiting any symptoms or signs of being ill in these areas, it is still important to get a baseline of what is ‘normal’ for your pet.

If your pet is having diarrhea, blood in the stool, mucous like bowel movements, get a sample and bring your pet in.

If your pet is urinating frequently, straining to urinate, urinating in the house (or outside of the litter), there is a pink tinge to the color, or there is a foul smell to it (more than normal), get a sample and bring your pet in!

Some easy tips:

For Fecals:

Dogs and cats: Use gloves! Pick up the sample with a Ziploc baggy or a dog poo bag. Freshest is best! Get it to the hospital as soon as you can! You can also use our fecal containers. They have a little shovel on them you can use to scoop a sample up and into the thick plastic container. We don’t need the entire sample. A ¼-½ of what your pet passed is enough. Wash your hands afterward!

For Urine:

Dogs: Use gloves! Keep them on a leash. Follow them around with a flat container that can easy be slipped under your female companion or your male companion. You can take it away once you have about ½ oz. (or 3 teaspoons), but more is always appreciated! A first morning urine is the best to get. Always wash your hands afterward! We can also take a sample by cystocentesis, which is a procedure where a needle is placed into the bladder through the abdominal wall of an animal and a sample of urine is removed. It’s painless, quick (if your puppy holds still) and the best way for a sterile sample.

Cats: Use gloves! Keep them confined to a small room with a completely cleaned out and empty litter box (no litter or paper). As soon as they go, take the sample and pour it into a container. Bring it in as soon as you can. A first morning urine is the best to get. Always wash your hands afterward! If need be, we can use the same method we do with dogs to extract a sterile sample (cystocentesis). It’s painless, quick (if your kitten holds still) and the best way for a sterile sample.

Let us know how these tips worked for you. Happy collecting!