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Emergency Procedures for Horses
In the case of the sudden death of your horse you should:
Keep the deceased animal in a sanitary, cool environment
at refrigerated temperatures from 35° to 45°F (2° to
5°C) until tissue samples are collected.
DO NOT FREEZE.
DO NOT BURY.
immediately at 808-989-2028.
Please follow the instructions below as it is too late to
order and ship a tissue collection kit:
Emergency instructions for Harvesting and Shipping
Tissue from Horses
Ice Gel Packs
Styrofoam and Cardboard Boxes
Ice Gel Packs
Step 1: Obtain three sterile bottles
for preserving and transporting the tissue samples. Bottles may
be plastic or glass approximately 10 ml or 1 oz. size. Each bottle
needs a screw cap that can be securely tightened to prevent leakage.
Step 2: Use standard 0.9% isotonic
saline solution as your transport medium.
Step 3: Prepare the surgical site.
The preferred area is on the neck under the mane for cosmetic reasons.
Shave the selected area with clippers and then a surgical blade
to remove as much hair as possible. Use the sterile gauze to clean
the area a disinfectant like Nolvasan. Apply a local anesthetic
like Lidocaine to surgical site. Some horses may need mild tranquilization
to perform this procedure.
Step 4: If a biopsy punch is not available
then perform an elliptical incision. Obtain approximately ¼ x ¼ inch
portion of full thickness skin that can be sutured or stapled with
one or two stitches. Try to maximize the amount of skin tissue and
minimize the amount of adipose tissue and hair. Using sterile forceps,
place the biopsy in bottle #1. Repeat the procedure and place in
Step 5: If the animal is deceased collect
muscle tissue instead of skin tissue. The muscle samples should
be approximately 1/4 inch in diameter and at least 3/8 inch long.
Step 6: Place the biopsy sample into
the bottle of transport media and keep refrigerated until it is
packed and shipped. Secure the lids on the bottles firmly.
Step 7: Repeat the biopsy described
in Step 4 above two more times until three sets of tissue samples
Step 8: Label each bottle as follows:
a. Owner name
b. Horse name
c. Date samples taken
Step 9: Place the tissue bottles in
a Styrofoam box with ONLY ONE frozen ice gel pack (NOT DRY ICE).
The samples need to be kept cold but not frozen. Place the ice gel
pack on the bottom of the container. Separate the bottles from the
ice gel pack with a layer of corrugated cardboard or Styrofoam to
prevent the tissue samples from direct contact with the ice gel
pack. The container should be capable of keeping the contents at
temperatures between 35° and 45°F (2° to 5°C) for
72 hours. Check with your courier such as Federal Express or UPS
for assistance and shipment times.
Step 10: Immediately transport the
package by overnight courier to:
Raymond Page, PhD
Life Science and Bioengineering / WPI
60 Prescott Street
Worcester, MA 01605
Step 11: Please provide PERPETUATE
the courier and tracking number by email (email@example.com)
or telephone (808-989-2028).
Step 12: Ship two bottles of tissue
samples. Keep the third bottle of extra samples in a refrigerator
until your shipment arrives at the laboratory in satisfactory condition.