Our cutting-edge facilities allow us to test samples from exotic animals like reptiles. We offer a selection of different faecal screens to reptile owners to test an animal’s gastrointestinal health, checking for parasites as well as bacterial and fungal infections, we also offer virus testing.
How does it work?
Simply order your desired testing kit from us and we’ll arrange to send your reptile testing kit, along with a form to fill in, and instructions.
We request samples from three different days within a seven day period where possible. Faecal samples should be kept in a cool place like a shed or garage. For Arenavirus PCR we required a Heparin blood sample (to be taken by an exotic vet) and an oesophageal plain swab and for Nidovirus PCR, we require a tracheal plain swab or a lavage.
Please note: as we are a laboratory and not a veterinary practice, we do not give advice regarding any treatments that may be available, as this is the responsibility of your exotic vet. Should interpretation be required, it will be stated on your report.
I’m thinking of doing the faeces tests for my two animals, you say it’s possible to do a combined sample if you have numerous animals kept in one vivarium, so does this mean I can order the Full Parasitology and get it done for the both animals, and get separate results, or do I need to pay twice?
If you have more than one animal kept in the same vivarium, it is possible to pool the faeces from both animals together and send it in as one sample. You will only get one set of results and there will only be one charge. If treatment is required though, you will need to treat both animals.
My reptile only goes to the toilet once every few days and you ask for a 3 day pooled sample, what do I do?
We ask for a 3 day pooled faecal sample, as some parasites can be intermittently shed. Therefore, a sample collected over 3 different days increases our chances of finding any parasites. If your reptile is going several days in between samples, after collecting the first sample, place it somewhere cool like a porch, shed or garage until you are able to collect a second sample. If after a few days, it looks like it might be drying out, add one drop of cooled boiled water to keep it moist. Do not collect samples for longer than 7 days.
My bearded dragon only poops once a week so not collecting samples for more than a week is nearly impossible. Is this going to be a problem?
Parasites are intermittently shed that is why we ask for a faecal sample collected from three different days, if you can only collect one sample over a week, it’s possible that there won’t be any parasites, so you will get a false negative. You need to bear this in mind when sending the sample.
Which test do I need just for parasites?
If you want to test just for parasites, we would recommend a Full Parasitology as this covers all known parasites including Cryptosporidia.
What bacteria can my reptile get?
Your reptile can get E. coli, Klebsiella Pneumoniae, Enterobacter, Pseudomonas, Serratia, Non-Fermenters, Salmonella & Campylobacter.
Additionally, yeasts and fungi can also be isolated.
Can I catch these bacteria from my reptile?
Yes. Good hygiene is a must, hands must be thoroughly washed with hot water and soap after handling. Please note this should be done in between handling EVERY animal, cleaning separate vivarium’s and thoroughly at the end of each session. Antiseptic soap and hand gels are available for added protection.
When do I pay and how?
We ask for payment with the submission of the sample either by debit or credit card.
When will I get my results?
This depends on which test you choose to do, below is a rough guide:
Faecal Screen – 24 hours from receipt
Full Parasitology – 24 hours from receipt
Reptile Faeces 1 – At least 48 hours from receipt, but may be longer if we need to do further tests, so could take up to 72 hours.
Reptile Faeces 2 – At least 48 hours from receipt, but may be longer if we need to do further tests, so could take up to 72 hours.
Cryptosporidia – 24 hours from receipt.
My reptile has tested positive for Salmonella and its says Serotype to follow, how long does this take?
If your reptile has tested positive for Salmonella, we send the sample to a government reference laboratory for confirmation and Serotype, this takes at least eight weeks and the results are sent to you as soon as they are ready.
Should I retest when my reptile has been treated?
Ideally, you should retest 2 weeks after all treatment has finished to ensure that the medication has worked and your animal is now clear. Please call the laboratory to see which test is required.