OncoK9® Training: Blood Collection | PetDx®

OncoK9® Training: Blood Collection

How to conduct the OncoK9 sample collection procedure


OncoK9 Kit Overview &
Patient Selection


Using a Vacuum Blood
Collection System with a
Straight Needle


Using a Vacuum Blood
Collection System with a
Butterfly Needle


Topping Off
Incompletely Filled Tubes


Blood Draw &
Sample Handling (PDF)

How to register the sample on the PetDx Veterinary Portal


Registering a Sample on the
PetDx Veterinary Portal


OncoK9 Product Insert (PDF)

How to package and ship the OncoK9 sample collection kit


Packaging &
Shipping Instructions

How to access and interpret OncoK9 test results

OncoK9 test results will be returned to you approximately two weeks after mailing the sample collection kit to PetDx.

PetDx respects the relationships you have with your clients. To ensure that you remain in control of the important follow-up conversations regarding test results, OncoK9 results will be delivered only to you through the PetDx Veterinary Portal. As always, our board-certified veterinary internists can help you understand your patient's results and, if further workup is needed, provide suggestions regarding the diagnostic plan.


Accessing OncoK9 Results


OncoK9 Test Interpretation Guide (PDF)

Frequently Asked Questions

Cancer is caused by genomic alterations that give a cell or group of cells growth and survival advantages over their neighbors. When cells die, whether they are normal or tumor cells, they shed their contents into the blood stream. This includes DNA released from within the cell. DNA fragments floating in the blood stream are called cell-free DNA (cfDNA) and the cell-free DNA from tumor cells is called circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA). These tiny fragments are fragile and exist for only minutes to hours if a sample is not collected using specialized tubes. When the sample is collected in specialized blood tubes and received at the PetDx Laboratory, it is processed and the cfDNA is extracted from the blood sample. The cfDNA is then prepared for Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) which generates billions of data points for each sample. Once the sequencing is complete, the data is analyzed using proprietary algorithms developed by PetDx to identify the presence of cancer-associated genomic alterations in the sample. If these are found, a Cancer Signal Detected result is issued. If they are not found, a Cancer Signal Not Detected result is reported.

OncoK9 is recommended as an annual screening test for all dogs starting at 7 years of age and starting at younger ages for dogs belonging to breeds in which cancer tends to develop earlier in life. The Cancer SAFE tool can be used to determine the age at which it may be appropriate to begin annual cancer screening for your patient based on breed or weight. Click here to visit the Cancer SAFE tool. Please see the Product Insert for a list of contraindications and other important information.

The clinical performance characteristics of the OncoK9 test were established in a very large clinical validation study of over 1,000 dogs, with and without a diagnosis of cancer, and published in the peer-reviewed journal PLOS ONE in April 2022 as the CANDiD (CANcer Detection in Dogs) study. The CANDiD study demonstrated the test's ability to detect 30 types of cancer in dogs, with overall sensitivity and specificity mirroring the performance of multi-cancer early detection tests recently developed for cancer screening in human patients.

In three of the most aggressive cancers in dogs (hemangiosarcoma, lymphoma & osteosarcoma), test sensitivity was 85% overall. Among eight of the most common cancers in dogs (anal gland adenocarcinoma, hemangiosarcoma, lymphoma, malignant melanoma, mammary gland, mast cell tumor, osteosarcoma & soft tissue sarcoma), test sensitivity was 62% overall. Across all cancer types in the CANDiD study, test sensitivity was 55%. In a large cohort of presumably cancer-free dogs in the CANDiD study, test specificity was 98.5%, corresponding to a low 1.5% false positive rate.

OncoK9 is a multi-cancer early detection test, designed to detect multiple classes of genomic alterations associated with a wide variety of cancers. This means that with just a blood sample, we can look for a cancer signal originating from many different types of cancer including lymphoma, osteosarcoma, hemangiosarcoma, histiocytic sarcoma, mammary gland carcinoma, malignant melanoma, mast cell tumors, soft tissue sarcoma and anal sac adenocarcinoma. In the clinical validation study, OncoK9 detected 30 different cancer types.

OncoK9 detects cancer-associated genomic alterations in a sample. If these are found, a Cancer Signal Detected report is issued. Samples in which no cancer-associated genomic alterations are identified are reported as Cancer Signal Not Detected. The test does not provide a definitive cancer diagnosis, and it should never be used as the sole basis for making important decisions such as treatment or euthanasia. A full clinical evaluation should be performed to establish a definitive diagnosis of cancer. Similarly, this test does not provide information about a patient's genetic risk for developing cancer or other clinical conditions in the future. The results only indicate the detection or non-detection of cancer signal in the patient's blood at the time of the blood draw.

In addition to a Cancer Signal Detected or Cancer Signal Not Detected result, a Cancer Signal Origin Prediction can be provided for approximately half of hematologic malignancy (lymphoma and leukemia) cases.

We are always optimizing the laboratory process and our current turnaround time is 7-12 calendar days from the day the sample is received at the laboratory to the time a test report is issued. Occasionally, the laboratory may determine that a sample requires additional processing or reanalysis, and these exceptions will add to the sample turnaround time.

No, your patient does not have to be fasted in order to have a sample drawn for OncoK9.

For a list of contraindications to running OncoK9 along with other important information, please visit the Product Insert.

Veterinary Customer Support

If you have any questions, please contact PetDx using the information below: