VetGen - The leader in veterinary genetic disease research and genetic disease detection services for purebred animals

DNA collection instructions

In the event that you have lost your VetGen-provided DNA Sample Collection Instructions or if you are curious to see just how simple the sample collection procedure is, we have provided instructions below for your reference.

Collection Instructions

First, a few quick notes...
If these instructions are followed closely, the DNA sample collection process will be very easy. The process is facilitated by using a helper. This allows one person to gently restrain and hold the animal's head while the second person collects each sample.

To avoid sample contamination from food, please collect the sample at least two hours after the animal's last meal or snack. Animals may have access to water at any time.

Please collect three (3) swabs (6 if for research) from each animal and fill out the pertinent sections of the submission form and return to VetGen by regular mail. The samples are stable for several weeks without refrigeration and do not need to be returned by express mail. (International customers please use airmail.)


  1. Wash hands before sample collection and between animals if more than one animal is being collected. (To avoid DNA contamination, always complete sample collection for one animal before beginning sample collection on the next animals.)
  2. Peel open the swab case part-way and remove the swab, being careful not to touch the bristles.
  3. Place the swab between the cheek and gum of the animal being tested.
  4. As briskly as you dare, scrub the swab (using a rolling technique) against the inside surface of the cheek for about 15 seconds to collect cheek cells (not saliva).
  5. Place the swab back in the original package and tape the end of the swab with standard tape.
  6. Repeat steps 2-5 with the two other swabs. Fill out requested animal information on back of each cheek swab case and the order form. Samples are stable without refrigeration and can be returned via regular mail. (International customers please use airmail.)
Please contact us if you have any other questions.