Sent on behalf of Dr. Holly Orlando, Consulting Veterinarian, Animal Care and Veterinary Service

Dear researchers,

Given the Vice-President’s (Research and International) memo sent on Saturday, March 28th regarding considerations for research laboratory practice modifications, which requested the scaling down of all non-essential research activities, we would like to update you on the operations of the Animal Care and Veterinary Service (ACVS) Department during this time.

First, we want to assure you that ACVS will continue daily care for all animals housed within the Health Sciences Building Vivarium.

Researchers will continue to have access to the animal facility, in particular, to manage their breeding colonies for non-commercially available strains of animals. We appreciate your cooperation in ensuring that only the minimum number of animals necessary to maintain these strains are produced and kept. Please keep in mind that all standard procedures for the care and holding of breeding animals still apply during this time.

We ask all users coming into the vivarium to respect the suggested physical distancing of 6 ft from other individuals within the vivarium, and to wash your hands when entering and exiting the facility. If you are feeling unwell and are unable to come in at any time during the course of your experiment, please do not come into the vivarium but delegate your work to another lab member that is listed on your Animal Use Protocol or, if this is not possible, please email ACVStech@carleton.ca to discuss alternatives.

All new technical service requests will be deferred indefinitely. Previously agreed to ACVS services for breeding colony management will continue to be provided.

No new surgical bookings will be accepted for the time being.

In addition, animal orders and animals that are to be shipped in from other institutions will not be accepted at this time.

Once the process to identify critical projects is completed, only animal research specifically approved by the Dean and Vice-President (Research and International) will be able to proceed, with ACVS working with researchers on a case-by-case basis.

ACVS Procedure Modifications

The following modifications should have only minimal impact on animal welfare and on your studies:

  • Rodent cage change frequencies for mouse individually ventilated cages will be extended to every 21 days (from every 14 days)
  • There has been a reduction in staffing levels to keep staff safe and match the level of ongoing work:
    • The vivarium remains accessible from 8:00am to 8:00pm.
    • The vivarium will be staffed from 8:00am to 1:30pm from Monday to Friday, and a technician will be in mornings to check on the animals during weekends and holidays.

We thank you for your much appreciated collaboration. We welcome hearing from you with any questions or concerns you may have, and we will keep you informed as the situation evolves.

Dr. Holly Orlando, D.V.M.
Consulting Veterinarian, Animal Care and Veterinary Service

Monday, March 30, 2020 in
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