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Veterinary Forensic Medicine is one of the rapidly developing branches of Veterinary Science. It has become the attention gaining subject now-a-days as it deals with the application of veterinary knowledge to aid in the administration of justice.

Vetero-legal medicine, veterinary Forensic medicine and veterinary Jurisprudence are synonymously used. Veterolegal medicine involves, as the name implies, the veterinary expertise with law matters. In veterinary subjects and legal procedures and animal related acts. Vetero legal medicine involves postmortem examination, using health, wound or soundness, protecting animal rights, investigation of offences against animals, poisonings and fraudulence of animals or animal products.

Vetero legal specimen collection for the laboratory investigation of animal diseases or poisoning is the essential step. Specimens may be collected from live animals or from environment for the sampling, they are carefully packed, labeled and transported to laboratory as quickly as possible with adequate requirements.

The main part of vetero legal medicine is postmortem examination.


  • A vetero legal postmortem examination should be done by written order from the police officer or the Executive Magistrate (RDO is sub divisional executive magistrate-I and Thasildar is sub divisional executive magistrate-II).
  • Refer examination, carefully read police report (Ask for “History of the case” or FIR Xerox).
  • The examination should be done in day light (Official court permitted timing:10.00am to 5.00pm)
  • No unauthorized person should be allowed to be present at the time of postmortem examination. The investigating police officer may however be present.


The starting point of laboratory investigation of an animal disease or vetero legal case is the specimen collection. Samples may be taken from live or dead animals or from environment. The purpose of sample collection is to diagnose a disease, or for disease surveillance, or for detecting the poisoning, if any, or for health certifying or to monitor the response to vaccination or treatment. Equally the packaging, labeling and transport of sample is also important.


Organic materials/viscera to be collected depend upon the nature of toxic chemical suspected. In the loop with its contents, liver bit, kidney bit, brain bit, blood, urine, vomits (if present) may be particularly useful for toxicological analysis.

Minimal suitable quantity:   
Liver500gmsKidneyOne half
Brain500gmsFat (If needed )200 gms
Hair5 to 10gIntestinal Content580 gms
Stomach Content750 gms in ruminants and available contents in small animals.
Whole Blood30 mlSerum15 ml
Urine50 mlFaeces10gm or Faecal Swabs
  • Collect each visceral specimen in a separate wide mouthed glass bottle/plastic bottle liver and kidney maybe combined collected in a single bottle.
  • Add preservative (Rectified spirit (or) saturated Sodium chloride (common salt) solution and tightly closed it.
  • Label the container as follows.
  • Pack all these bottles in a box (card board box preferably)
  • Seal the viscera box with red sealing wax and paste a label on the top of box also.
  • Hand over the viscera box to the concerned Head Constable who came for P.M. with a letter of request.
  • Regional Forensic Lab, Animal Toxicology Division
I. Visceral SamplesSaturated Sodium chloride Solution for toxicological analysis or rectified spirit
II. BloodSodium fluoride 20gms/ml, EDTA or citrate.
III. FaecesNot needed
IV. UrineThymol in all cases. But in suspected alcohol poisoning Phenyl Mercuric nitrate is used.
V. MilkPreservative not needed, sent in cold storage condition
VI. Feed, samples from environment, water swabs from feeders and ventilation duct.Preservative not needed.
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