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What you need to know to utilize animals:

Before using vertebrate animals in research, teaching or testing at the University of Colorado Boulder (UCB), you must have an approved Protocol on file with the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) or be listed on an approved protocol. If you are working with recombinant DNA or bio-hazardous material in animals submit an IBC application simultaneously to minimize delays in the reviews.

Before you can work with animals at UCB and receive keys or card access to the facilities, you must:

 After your protocol is approved, the principal investigator must:

  • Submit an Amendment/Addendum and receive approval before making any changes to an approved animal use protocol.
  • Submit an Annual Review Form at least one month before the anniversary of your protocol approval. Do the same thing one month before the anniversary of the second year of your protocol.
  • Submit an Unanticipated Event Form if an incident occurs that is not listed on your approved protocol. For any issue of health or welfare of the animal, contact the Institutional Veterinarian or other veterinary staff member.
  • Be prepared for semi-annual inspections or other post-approval monitoring.
  • Keep appropriate records such as training documentation for yourself and all your personnel and surgery records for your animals.

 You must minimize potential pain and distress in animals by:

  • Being trained in proper animal handling
  • Choosing alternatives to live animals whenever possible
  • Providing for proper housing and behavioral needs of the animals
  • Follow appropriate guidelines for procedures that are likely to cause pain or distress
  • Knowing how to determine if the animal is experiencing pain or distress.
  • Utilizing appropriate anesthetics and analgesics for painful procedures, or justify to the IACUC why they cannot be used
  • Use aseptic technique and proper procedures when performing surgery
  • Provide appropriate post-procedural care
  • Perform euthanasia of animals using approved methods
  • Contact the Institutional Veterinarian or other veterinary staff member when there is a sick or injured animal, or you have a question about animal health.

 You must be aware of the hazards you are working with and receive the appropriate safety training through Environmental Health and Safety.

 You must be aware of the various regulations and guidelines that affect animal use at the University of Colorado Boulder.

 You must follow the Animal Care Program policies and procedures.

 Principal investigators must keep track of the number of animals they use and submit reports.

 Before ordering, transferring animals from one protocol to another, or importing animals, you must email the IACUC office with your request at least 48 hours ahead of time. For orders include the # of each species to be ordered, vendor, and the protocol #.

Know who to contact for questions about:            

Other helpful suggestions:

  • Read the protocol and addenda to know what has been approved.
  • Know your risks (read MSDS, SOPs, and know how to report injuries)
  • Where Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as appropriate.
  • Report animal welfare concerns
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