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Animal Resources

Operations and Services

Operational Hours

The Animal Resources (AR) facilities are fully staffed 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Staff complete daily checks, essential husbandry and feedings on the weekends. Business office hours are 8 a.m.–5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

For security purposes, all facility areas are locked at all times. Individuals requiring proximity card access to facilities must be listed on a current, approved Animal Use Protocol (AUP), must be enrolled in the Occupational Health and Safety Program, and must have completed the appropriate training courses required by the IACUC. Upon completion of these requirements, individuals should contact the Animal Facility Supervisor to schedule an orientation for the facility in which they will be working. Facility orientations provide users with detailed information about working in the animal facility. Individuals requiring keyed entries for animal rooms must come to the AR Business office (Room 206) after completion of their orientation to get a key. Users will be required to fill out a Key Check-Out Form and get their business manager’s signature (to provide a refundable deposit) before a key will be issued. Please allow adequate time to get all required signatures.

Animal Procurement

Obtaining defined quality research and instructional animals presents different problems than the purchase of standard stock items. In purchasing animals, one must consider, in addition to price, the suitability of the animal for the research or instructional program in which it is to be used, the health and genetics of the animal, the ability of the supplier to provide the animal, transportation facilities and connections available, ethical and fiscal integrity of the vendor, and evaluation of the vendor’s facilities and programs for producing animals.

Methods of Animal Procurement

  • Regular Purchase Request: These follow the standard routine for all purchase and require a “lead-time” of at least 2 to 3 weeks before the animals are needed. Costs are billed directly to the user’s account.
  • Emergency Purchase Request: These follow the standard procedure for emergency orders. Procurement has strict guidelines on the use of emergency purchase requests and requires a letter of justification from the user. Costs are billed directly to the user’s account.
  • Blanket Order - AR: To facilitate procurement and save time, AR has blanket orders with Harlan and Jackson Labs for commonly used animals such as rabbits, rats, mice, guinea pigs, gerbils and hamsters. We have a previously authorized commitment to these vendors so that animals can be ordered by phone (subject to availability). Orders should be placed AT LEAST TWO WEEKS prior to need so that paperwork can be completed and transportation arranged. Costs are billed to the user’s account.
  • Petty Check Account for Purchase of Farm and Domestic Animals: AR has a petty checking account for purchase of farm and domestic animals. No definite lead-time can be given since obtaining these animals depends upon availability. Users are urged to allow as much prior notice as possible. The user’s account is billed directly.

Procedure for Ordering Animals

All animals used in the CVM research and instructional programs MUST be ordered by submitting an Animal Order Request Form [PDF] to the AR Business Office and be procured from vendor sources approved by the Assistant Director. Animals will be procured only AFTER the following items have been met:

  • The user MUST have a current Animal Use Proposal (AUP) within Artemis. Orders for animals SHOULD include the number of animals desired, sex, breed, strain, age, weight, and other relevant information. However, more stringent requirements regarding weight ranges, sex, age, etc. often increase the cost of the animal and the time required to fill the order because it may be more difficult to get the animals.
  • The user MUST get the departmental business manger’s signature on the Animal Request Form.

In summary, please allow adequate time for processing orders for animals. A vendor may need extra time to fill an order for animals of a specific strain, weight, etc. In addition, AR does not maintain a stock of any research animals. Please discuss your needs with the AR Operations Manager well in advance of the start of your project. Accuracy of information and timeliness of your Animal Request form is critical to meet your needs. Incomplete forms or inaccurate information can result in delays and increased costs.

Miscellaneous

Private animal donations are not accepted by Animal Resources. Donations of certain livestock may be made through the Veterinary Teaching Hospital if the animals are needed for ongoing research projects.

Animals intended to be transferred to another Principal Investigator, AUP or account must be approved using a PI-to-PI Transfer Request Form, which must be completed and returned to the AR office so that AUP and fiscal records can be changed.

When appropriate, AR personnel will attempt to locate users for animals that could be utilized in other studies.

At the end of some studies, livestock (cattle, horses, and hogs) may have some commercial market value. These animals MUST be marketed according to state laws. The Dean has issued a policy that only AR personnel are authorized to sell College-owned animals.

Research Animal Adoption Policy

Under specific circumstances, the CVM will authorize the adoption of dogs and cats previously used for research and instructional purposes. The UGA-CVM Research Animal Adoption Policy [PDF] defines the conditions for adoption.

Post-Surgical Care

Post-surgical care of experimental and instructional animals is the primary responsibility of the Principal Investigator to whom the animal is assigned and must follow the IACUC-approved AUP. Animals MUST be treated humanely and care must comply with standards in the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals [PDF; 8th edition, 2011] and in Policy #3 of the USDA-APHIS Animal Care Policies [PDF, 2007]. The Assistant Director of AR is charged with the responsibility to see that post-surgical care is accomplished humanely and in accordance with acceptable veterinary medical practices, and the AD is available for consultation regarding these matters.

Service Costs

A majority of the operating costs of the AR unit are recovered by a charge-back system to users for the services rendered or material obtained. Costs charged to the user include animal procurement, animal maintenance, and associated services. Every attempt is made to establish equitable per diem and service rates based on established cost-accounting and rate-setting procedures outlined in the Cost Analysis and Rate Setting Manual for Animal Facilities published by the National Center for Research Resources. Per diem rates include routine housing and care, feeding a standard diet, watering, and sanitation. Any other activities requested by the user will be on a charge-back basis.

Click here to visit our per diem and service charges page.

Animal Census

Since users are billed for animal maintenance, it is imperative that animal census be current and accurate. AR personnel and animal users must share this responsibility. All animals received in our facilities are assigned a barcoded cage card number which uniquely identifies that animal or, in the case of mice, a group of animals in the cage (box). If animals are used or found deceased by the user, it is the user’s responsibility to record this date on the cage card. These cage cards MUST be placed in the "OUT" boxes located next to each animal facility office. Additionally, each animal room has a Census Activity Sheet (blue sheets) which animals used, found deceased or transferred MUST be recorded by cage card number.

Animal Resources personnel responsibility:

  • maintain a daily animal census
  • perform audits and reconcile animal census discrepancies
  • process census entries in the database for animals received, euthanized or found deceased by AR staff

User responsibility:

  • record the date on cage cards of animals used or found deceased and place in "OUT" boxes
  • record the date and cage card number of animals used, transferred or found dead on the appropriate Census Activity Sheet
  • record and provide the animal facilities supervisors appropriate information regarding rodents bred in our facilities so they can be added to the census and accounted for on the AUP

Failure to follow these guidelines will cause discrepancies between the actual census, AR’s census database, and the user’s census.

Communication

In order to minimize the possibility of misunderstanding and confusion, all requests for services, instructions and purchases should be in writing (on the appropriate Services Request form, email, or as a memorandum). Information regarding specific animal facility operational procedures, animal husbandry and health, safety issues, and facility policies are outlined in Animal Facility Handbooks.

Transportation

Vehicles and personnel are available on a limited basis for the transport of animals or materials. Animal transportation policies, and procedures regarding transport within animal facilities and outside of animal facilities, are detailed in the Animal Facility Handbook. For current charges for these services refer to the AR per diem and services rate schedule.

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