Tips from our friends at Austin Davis Biologics Ltd on the Tapeworm Saliva Test
We have recently been receiving in a higher than usual number of samples that are too dilute to obtain a reliable tapeworm burden result from. The usual reason for dilute samples is that the horse hasn’t abstained from eating for 30 minutes prior to the sample being taken. We would be very grateful if you could emphasise the sampling instructions to your customers and encourage them to be very strict about 30 minutes without food. Even picking up a few morsels of hay from the floor can be enough to effect the result (as I have discovered myself!). Despite having said this, there are occasions where a horse is naturally slobbery, so a very diluted sample is sometimes unavoidable.
As you may be aware, we can concentrate some samples and retest them but some horses need re-sampling. This all adds to the time waiting for a result for that horse.
Dr Corrine Austin