Necropsy

National Bio Vet Lab has partnered with Cherished Pet Autopsy and Discovery Services (CPADS) to offer necropsy services.

A necropsy (or animal autopsy in animal species) is a postmortem (after life) examination of a body to investigate and discover a possible cause or causes of death or disease. In some cases, a cause of clinical decline or death in an animal is not straightforward. In such cases, necropsy may be a useful procedure that can assist in determining causes of death. A few examples of causes include infectious disease, inflammatory processes, congenital anomalies, cancer, or underlying physiological abnormalities.

  • Comprehensive investigative necropsy services for domestics and exotics:
    • Tissue evaluation
    • Morphologic diagnosis
    • Histopathology and microbiology lab diagnostics
  • 14-day turn-over for results
  • Consultation with a board-certified veterinary pathologist
  • Courier pickup service in Florida: Email or call 800-910-2888 or email us at necropsy@nbvl.cc to schedule pickup
  • Post necropsy private cremation and memorial products
  • On-site evaluations are available
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What types of necropsy services do you offer?

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We accept fresh specimens for post-mortem examination as well as formalin-fixed necropsies (“necropsies-in-a-jar”). Please reach out to us about any special preparations needed if you are unsure.

What species of animals do you evaluate?

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We are trained to perform pathological evaluations on all species. We will happily accept dogs, cats, birds, rodents, reptiles, amphibians, and more! We accept bodies up to 90 kilograms and can schedule a field necropsy for larger animals.

How much does the necropsy and cremation cost?

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The cost of the entire procedure (including necropsy and cremation) is determined mostly on the animals weight and type of cremation. We offer both private or communal cremation. Please email us at necropsy@nbvl.cc or visit our contact form to get an estimate.

Why does it matter what the animal weighs?

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The weight of the deceased animal is factored into the labor cost of our staff, supplies needed to perform the procedure, and the length of time for the procedure.

What is the difference between Private and Communal cremation?

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Private cremation ensures that the pet is cremated privately, and the ashes are returned to the owner(s) in a memorialized wooden urn. They will also receive a clay paw print and a small vial of hair clippings.

Communal cremation allows the animal or pet to be cremated with other angels. Ashes are not returned. This option is available for any species, provided they do not pose a zoonotic hazard. Memorial items can be purchased with communal cremation selection.

How soon should a necropsy be performed?

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Postmortem examination is best performed within 24 hours of death. Ideally, as soon as possible. If you require longer, please store the animal in a COOLER, or in a sealed waterproof container with ice packs—DO NOT FREEZE.

If I don’t have a cooler available, what should I do?

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Although freezing is not preferred, it is still preferred over allowing a deceased pet to sit at room temperature. Necropsy of a frozen animal will be delayed to allow warming of the body. Tissue freezing artifacts are also possible.

Can I send more than one biopsy or formalin-fixed necropsy at a time (multiple patients)?

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Yes, provided that each sample/patient has their own submission form and appropriately labeled containers.

If you have any questions, feel free to call us at 800-910-2888 or email us at necropsy@nbvl.cc

When should my patient have an necropsy?

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In some cases, a cause of clinical decline or death of an animal is not straightforward. In such cases, necropsy may be useful as the procedure to assist in determining causes of death. Causes can include infectious disease, toxicoses, inflammatory processes, congenital anomalies, cancer, or underlying physiological abnormalities. Postmortem examination is best performed within 24 hours of death. Ideally, as soon as possible, but with proper cooling of the body can be done later than 24 hours.

My patient just passed away—what should I do?

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If available at your veterinary clinic, the best option is to store your patient in a refrigerated cooler. DO NOT FREEZE! If a cooler is not available, an insulated and sealable cooler or container (such as a plastic storage bin) with abundant ice packs is the next preferred option.

If you would like to move forward with an necropsy, please call us at 800-910-2888 to organize the next steps. Alternatively, you may also email us at necropsy@nbvl.cc and send any medical information that you may think is helpful.

How long does the entire process take? And when will I receive the final report?

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The entire necropsy process can be labor-intensive as our pathologists take special care in thoroughly investigating every case. A preliminary call or email will be made within 48 hours of the gross examination. Please allow a minimum of 2-3 weeks for your patient’s final report to be released. If the case warrants additional ancillary testing (such as bacterial culture, virus isolation, PCR, or immunohistochemistry), the results may require a few additional days. The pathologists will be in communication with you throughout the process as results are available.

What does the final report look like?

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The final report will have a detailed description of the gross findings, morphological microscopic changes, a comprehensive comment, and professional-grade photographs of both gross and microscopic findings.

What happens to my patient after the necropsy?

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NBVL / CPADS offers cremation services through a locally owned cremation facility (Monarch Pet Memorial Services) and this service is calculated in the patient’s final necropsy cost. We pride ourselves on the delicate aftercare we have for our angels and believe they deserve only the best handling and treatment. Your client will elect Private cremation or Communal cremation for their pet.

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