Approval of Facilities Housing Vertebrate Animals

At UNH, any and all research, testing, and instruction involving vertebrate animals must be reviewed and approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) prior to commencing. Further, the IACUC is required to inspect and approve all facilities temporarily or permanently housing vertebrate animals at the University. This authority is in accordance with the Public Health Service Policy on the Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, the Animal Welfare Act (Public Law 99-158), and UNH policy.

Accordingly, when

  • planning the renovation of existing UNH facilities that will/may house vertebrate animals,
  • designing new UNH facilities that will/may house vertebrate animals, or
  • considering conducting work involving vertebrate animals in facilities not currently approved by the IACUC for the species in question,

UNH personnel should be cognizant of applicable regulations/guidelines. These regulations concern both the construction and maintenance of environments where vertebrate animals will be housed, and the transport of animals between facilities. The primary source for such regulations is the National Research Council’s Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (referred to as “the Guide”), which contains two chapters addressing environment and housing.

Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals

Issues to be considered include, but are not limited to:

  • space requirements
  • temperature and humidity
  • illumination
  • enclosures
  • back-up power resources
  • security, and
  • public access (if applicable).

A checklist used by the IACUC when conducting its semiannual inspection of facilities housing vertebrates provides additional information about the types of issues that need to be addressed, and is available from the Animal Resources Office (ARO).

Animal Resources Office (ARO)

In order to both provide for animal welfare, and to facilitate IACUC approval of animal housing and projects, the IACUC recommends the following:

  • When building new facilities or renovating existing ones, UNH personnel responsible for facility design and planning should not only consult the regulations, but also consider asking a staff member from the ARO or an IACUC member to join the planning (steering) committee that will guide the renovation/construction of the facility. Further, the IACUC recommends consulting with faculty and staff members who have experience using the species that will be housed in the facility.
  • When considering housing animals (temporarily or permanently) in areas not currently approved by the IACUC for the species to be used, it is highly advisable to consult the ARO staff or an IACUC member before seeking formal approval from the IACUC. The IACUC also recommends consulting with faculty and staff members who have experience in working with the species that will be housed in the area.

For the ARO, contact Dean Elder, D.V.M., Director (603) 862-4629 or Linnea Morley, Associate Director (603) 862-4629. IACUC membership is available on-line or contact Julie Simpson, Director, Research Integrity Services (603) 862-2003.

View Animal Care & Use Knowledge Base

The Knowledge Base contains forms, instruction and training material, policies, guidance, tools, and other resources to support your research efforts by topic area.


Contact Information

Dean Elder, D.V.M., Director
Animal Resources Office
Rudman Hall
Durham, NH 03824
Phone: (603) 862-4629
Email: dean.elder@unh.edu

Linnea Morley, D.V.M., Associate Director
Animal Resources Office
Rudman Hall
Durham, NH 03824
Phone: (603) 62-4629
Email: linnea.morley@unh.edu

Julie Simpson, Director
Research Integrity Services
Service Building Room 107
51 College Road
Durham, NH 03824
Phone: (603) 862-2003
Email: julie.simpson@unh.edu