Tips for Collecting Pet Fecal and Urine Samples
At Home

Collecting your dog or cat's test sample is easy.
Here are our vet's top tips to make collecting your pet's fecal or urine sample super simple. 

Looking for help collecting choosing tests? Click here. 

Collecting your pet's fecal sample before an appointment

Who needs to collect a fecal sample before an appointment?

1) All Total and Basic Health Assessments for Cats and Dogs
2) Desert Dog Test Panels
3) If your ordered any Add-on Fecal Tests

If you ordered an in-home visit (Tests We Collect) that includes a Total or Basic Health Assessment for Dogs or Cats, or Desert Dog Panel, we will be performing a complete fecal analysis on those pets. You can speed up your appointment time by obtaining a fresh stool sample from the morning of our visit.

If you ordered any add-on fecal test for your pet, try to obtain a fresh stool sample the morning of your appointment.

1. Poop

Fresh feces is best, so wait until your doggo goes or kitty uses the litter box and then pounce! Try to collect the stool sample the day of your appointment if possible. 

For multi-cat households: Make sure the litter box is cleaned prior to collecting a sample. Some cat parents prefer to isolate their kitty in a bathroom with its own litter box until it poops. Others keep the litter cleaned and carefully watch until the cat they need a sample from has used the litter box. There’s no perfect way to collect a stool sample in a multi-cat household, just be sure you have the right cat’s poop!

For dogs, try to collect a fresh sample the morning of your appointment.

For most accurate test results, obtain samples 1 to 4 hours before we arrive. 

2. Scoop

We recommend wearing medical gloves whenever handling your pet’s poop sample. Using a spoon, scoop, or whatever you feel helpful, scoop about one gram of stool (about the size of a grape or sugar cube) into a plastic bag or container you can seal. Try to avoid getting too much litter or debris in the sample, although a small amount is expected.

3. Store

Place the stool sample in a bag or container and seal as tightly as possible. Many pet parents will double-bag their pet's fecal sample. Refrigerate the sample until we arrive. That's it!

Collecting your pet's fecal sample for a mail-in kit

As soon as your Fecal Test Collection Kit arrives, freeze the included ice pack for shipping. To keep your pet's fecal sample fresh and provide accurate test results, be sure to ship it with the frozen ice pack included in your kit. Freeze the pack flat to aid in shipping.

1. Poop

Fresh feces is best, so wait until your doggo goes or kitty uses the litter box and then pounce!

For multi-cat households:
Make sure the litter box is cleaned prior to collecting a sample. Some cat parents prefer to isolate their kitty in a bathroom with its own litter box until it poops. Others keep the litter cleaned and carefully watch until the cat they need a sample from has used the litter box. There’s no perfect way to collect a stool sample in a multi-cat household, just be sure you have the right cat’s poop!

2. Scoop

We recommend wearing the provided medical gloves whenever handling your pet’s poop sample. Remove the sample spoon from the collection vial, and scoop about one gram of stool (about the size of a grape or sugar cube).

Try to avoid getting too much litter or debris in the sample vial, although a small amount is expected. Use the collection scoop to place the fecal sample in the vial and secure tightly.

3. Send

Place the vial in the sample bag and seal. Refrigerate the bagged sample until you are ready to send.

Be sure to mail your samples within 4 to 12 hours of collection for most accurate test results.

To send, simply insert the vial and bag inside the protective bubble wrap mailer. Next, place the double-wrapped sample along with the frozen ice pack into the pre-labeled return mailer. Finally, drop off at your nearest UPS.

Once the lab receives your pet’s sample, you’ll receive test results within two to three days.

Collecting your pet's urine sample before an appointment

Who needs to collect a urine sample?

1) All Dogs Undergoing a Total Health Assessment
2) Desert Dog Test Panel
3) Any Add-on Urine Tests

If you ordered an in-home visit (Tests We Collect) that includes a Total Health Assessment for Dogs or Desert Dog Test Panel, we will be performing a complete urinalysis on those pets. You can speed up your appointment time by obtaining a fresh urine sample from the morning of your appointment.

If you ordered any add-on urine test for your pet, especially cats, try to obtain a fresh urine sample the morning of your appointment.

If you're unable to collect a urine sample before we arrive, no problem! We'll leave you mail-in kit you can send to us.

In some cases, especially for cat or dog appointments where you added an additional urinalysis or urine tests, you may be able to obtain a urine sample before we arrive. This will help speed up both when you receive test results, but also your appointment time.

If you're unable to collect a urine sample before our visits, no worries! We'll leave you a urine collection kit and mailer you can send within 7 working days.

Note that some test results may be delayed until the urinalysis is performed. If we do not receive your pet's urine sample within 7 working days after the visit, we may not be able to conduct the tests, and you will still be charged for the urine tests. If you are encountering problems obtaining your pet's urine sample after a visit, please let us know as soon as possible at help@affordablepetlabs.com


1. Pee

Fresh urine is important for accurate results, so we recommend collecting your dog's first urination the morning of your appointment. For cats, you may find that confining your cat in a bathroom with a litter box full of shredded paper, dried beans, plastic beads, or special non-absorbable kitty litter such as Kit4Cat.

For multi-cat households: Make sure the litter box is cleaned prior to collecting a sample. Some cat parents prefer to isolate their kitty in a bathroom with its own litter box until it urinates. Others keep the litter cleaned and carefully watch until the cat they need a sample from has used the litter box. There’s no perfect way to collect a sample in a multi-cat household, just be sure you have the right cat’s pee!

For dogs, try to collect a fresh sample the morning of your appointment.

For most accurate test results, obtain samples 1 to 4 hours before we arrive. 

2. Collect

We recommend wearing medical gloves whenever handling your pet’s urine sample.

For cats: Using a spoon, scoop, or simply pour about 1/2 to 2 ounces of urine into a plastic bag or container you can seal. Try to avoid getting too much litter or debris in the sample, although a small amount is expected.

For dogs: Use a ladle, cup, bowl, or any clean container to catch about 1/2 to 2 ounces of fresh urine. 

3. Store

Keep the sample upright in the bag or container and seal if possible. Refrigerate the sample until we arrive. We will transfer the urine into an appropriate lab test vial. That's it!

Collecting your pet's urine sample to send to us

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