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Frequently Asked Questions

Husbandry

 

 

How do I know who the Unit Supervisor is for rooms where my animals are housed? Who is the technician for my animal room?
Room/unit-specific personnel information is posted on each animal room door.

How do I report animal husbandry problems in my animal room?
In general, contact the Unit Supervisor for your room. See other FAQs for contact information and for emergency situations.

How do I return soiled caging equipment to the RBV?
Cages that are removed from the RB Vivarium should be returned to the back hallway through the southwest double doors (i.e., not through the locker room entrances). Place cages, bottles, lids, etc. on cart inside the doors.

How often are cages and animal rooms sanitized?
There are differences in sanitation schedules based on species, housing system and, sometimes, the research project. Schedules for all primary enclosures (cages or pens) and animal room surfaces are maintained by the Unit Supervisor; please contact the US for more information.

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How are sanitation practices monitored?
Sanitization in the cage and rack washers is achieved by reaching 180 F temperature in the final rinse, and this is monitored by use of temperature sensitive tapes that are run in each washer with the first load of the day; washers also have digital readouts of temperature and alarms if 180 F is not reached. SOPs are under development for direct microbiological monitoring of sanitization practices for animal room surfaces.

Who decides how much to feed my animals?
The feeding protocols for research animals are the responsibility of the LAR Facility Manager. Please contact the Manager with specific questions and to arrange for specialized diets or feeding schedules. LAR veterinarians may be consulted for new or unfamiliar species, and become involved with feeding issues if an animal is reported for weight problems or clinical signs that might be associated with food.

What do I do if my study requires a specialized diet?
Investigators should discuss, with the LAR Facility Manager, early in the planning stages of a project if they will require a non-standard diet for their research animals. Vendors and appropriate feed delivery systems will need to be identified. Once the Investigator has a start date identified, he/she will not only need to check off the appropriate area of the Animal Request Form, but provide sufficient time to order and receive the product prior to animal order/arrival. Communication with the Facility Manager on starting dates in studies with special dietary needs is very important to ensure the food arrives in advance of the animals.

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Who do I call if there is an emergency in my rooms?
During regular working hours, call the Unit Supervisor or LAR office at 513-2931. After hours, LAR maintains an emergency phone line that has current information for the on-call veterinarian, manager, and supervisor: 513-6656. The general emergency number for campus is 911 or, for after-hours physical plant problems, 515-2991.

Who do I contact if I need supplies in a room where my animals are housed?
Normal stocking of rooms is done by the room technician. During normal working hours, 7:00am-3:30pm on weekdays, contact the Unit Supervisor if your room technician is not available in the room. After hours and weekends, contact the supervisor on-call (call 513-6656 to find out who’s on call).

Who do I contact if there is a problem with the physical environment of my animals?
During normal working hours, 7:00am-3:30pm on weekdays, please contact the Unit Supervisor with any concerns about the room, caging or other equipment. The US will assess the situation and contact the necessary department and/or personnel to correct the problem. After hours and weekends, contact the supervisor on-call (call 513-6656 to find out who’s on call). See other FAQs for emergency situations.

What are all the signs for on animal room doors?
Each animal room will have posted room-specific information, including names of the Unit Supervisor and room technician. Most rooms will also have instruction on entry requirements, i.e., what personal protective clothing/equipment (PPE) is needed. Some rooms may have a room order indicated (primarily for LAR staff moving between animal rooms) or be posted for use of hazardous substances within. Please read signage carefully and check with the US if you have questions.

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Where do I find more PPE, and do I get charged for it?
PPE is stocked in the halls or airlocks; in the RBV it is kept in the locker rooms. If your study requires a higher level of PPE or greater amounts of PPE than is normally used, you will be charged for the additional PPE.

What do I do if I find a dead animal in the animal room?
The unit supervisor (US) should be promptly informed of any animal deaths. If the dead animal is part of your study, verify animal identification by ear tag, collar, microchip reader, or tattoo. Communicate to the US the cage card information and any needs for tissue collection or necropsy. If tissue or a necropsy is not required for a project, LAR veterinary staff may submit the animal to the necropsy service for purposes of colony disease surveillance or to comply with regulations concerning unexplained animal deaths. PIs should communicate with the US at the beginning of the project if there are any standing needs for handling of an animal found dead.

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