IZVG logo

IZVG Pathology - Submission of material (bodies) for post mortem

A division of the International Zoo Veterinary Group

IZVG Home Page

About IZVG Pathology

IZVG Pathology Facilities & Services

IZVG Pathology Staff

Sample Collection and Fixation

Submission for Pathology and Diagnostics

Sample Packaging Guidelines

Submission of Bodies for Post-mortem

Practice News

IZVG Publications List

Please Note: all carcasses for gross post mortem should be sent to: IZVG Pathology, Station House, Parkwood Street, Keighley, BD21 4NQ.

All other samples are to be sent to: IZVG Pathology, c/o NationWide Laboratory Services Leeds, Gate Way Drive, Yeadon, Leeds, LS19 7XY.

If in doubt about where to send samples, please telephone 01535 692000.


For submission of histopathology and non-histology diagnostic samples, please click here.

We can handle full post mortem examinations of any species up to approximately 60kg. For larger animals, including all primates weighing more than 10kg, please contact IZVG Pathology (01535 692000 or email) prior to submission.

Please note that carcasses submitted for post mortem examination CANNOT be returned to the owner. We can however arrange for remains to be individually-cremated and the ashes returned to the owner in a suitable commemorative container. Please contact IZVG Pathology (01535 692000 or email) prior to submission, and INDICATE YOUR WISHES CLEARLY at the time of submission.

For animals up to 10kg inside the UK please use our Royal Mail Special Delivery Guaranteed Response Service. This should be cheaper and more straightforward than most couriers. The cost will be included in your invoice. Please contact IZVG Pathology (01535 692000 or email) for detailed instructions including our personalised response label

Please note: The Post Office only permits members of the public to submit specimens through the post under the direction of a veterinary surgeon or registered laboratory.

General Packaging instructions:

Rules govern how specimens must be packaged for postage. It is important that these are followed to prevent specimens being destroyed and to avoid public health risks following the handling of improperly packaged specimens.

Only freshly dead carcasses are suitable for post mortem examination. If you are unsure, please discuss this with us. Specimens deteriorate rapidly; it is important to make arrangements as soon as possible.

Ideally, carcasses should be stored refrigerated in a suitable appliance designated for that purpose. Frozen carcasses are less useful than refrigerated ones, but may yield diagnoses. Carcasses can also be stored outside in a cool place, inaccessible to pets, wild animals and children. Detailed regulations for packaging can be found here, but a practical approach is summarised below:

  • Place the carcass in a heavy duty plastic bag (ideally a clinical waste bag).
  • This bag must then be wrapped in an absorbent material such as cotton wool, absorbent paper or cellulose wadding. Sufficient absorbent material must be used to absorb all possible leakage in the event of damage. This must then be placed within ANOTHER similar plastic bag and sealed to produce a leak-proof package.
  • Wash and disinfect your hands.
  • The package should then be placed within a rigid, crush proof container (e.g. sturdy plastic tub & clip-down lid/Tupperware or strong cardboard box with full depth lid) with the lid firmly fixed using self-adhesive tape.
  • This container should then be packaged, within a bubble-lined post-bag or other external impervious wrapper, along with one of our completed submission forms for the case.
  • Outer layer should be labelled UN3373 Biological Substance Category B

Contact IZVG Pathology (01535 692000 or email) for a Royal Mail Special Delivery Guaranteed Response Service label.



International Zoo Veterinary Group is a trading name of IZVG LLP, a limited liability partnership no. OC361054, registered England

IZVG supports Wildlife Vets International registered charity no. 1109670
Veterinary support for conservation worldwide
Make a donation