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Oversight of Animal Care Performed by Research Staff


Husbandry and sanitation in animal housing is the ultimate responsibility of the chief campus veterinarian in consultation with the attending veterinarian; however, it is the responsibility of housing staff to handle the husbandry and sanitation tasks. To demonstrate appropriate levels of animal care and sanitation, whoever provides animal care—either dedicated animal care staff or research staff—must keep records. "If it isn't recorded, it wasn't done."

General record requirements for husbandry/sanitation/observation

  • Must be kept on site (in the facility or lab)
  • Must be available for attending veterinarian or designee
  • Must be available for any regulatory visitors
  • Must be legible
  • Must be signed or initialed, and dated

Record daily

  • Animal health (including animal deaths)
  • Room temperature (ambient temp for outside enclosures)
  • Room humidity (for indoor facilities)
  • Feeding
  • Watering (or checking watering devices)
  • Cage cleaning (dogs, cats, nonhuman primates)
  • Manure scraping (if applicable)
  • Provision of environmental enrichment (if applicable)
  • Sweeping/mopping as required
  • Animal exercise (if applicable)
  • Unusual animal enclosure conditions, e.g.,
    • cage or room floods
    • escaped animals
    • evidence of room temperatures outside of normal limits
    • power outage

Record weekly (minimum)*

  • Rodent cage changes
  • Wire-bottomed cage pan changes
  • Rabbit pan changes
  • Watering device changes/flushes (more often if needed)
  • Sweeping/mopping if needed

Record every two weeks (minimum)*

  • Cage sanitation (dogs, cats, nonhuman primates, rabbits)
  • Rodent rack changes (if applicable)
  • Rodent wire-bottomed cages
  • Check or change of room ventilation filters (if applicable)

Record whenever done

  • Drain/sink cleaning
  • Food barrels sanitization
  • Bedding replacement for large animals
  • Room sanitization (washing walls, etc.)
  • Sanitization of corridors, cagewash rooms, storerooms, etc.
  • Vermin control
  • Validation of sanitization procedures (e.g., checking cagewash temps, biological monitoring of cage wash efficacy)

*May be done more often. Record as done.