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Animal Care and Use FAQs

Updated: Dec. 21, 2020

The ACUP office is operational, but with limited staff. If you have IACUC questions, please contact

All ARCD and TRACSS managed animal facilities in Blacksburg (College of Veterinary Medicine, Life Sciences 1, Integrated Life Sciences Building) and Roanoke (Fralin Biomedical Research Institute) are operational. Changes in the operating status of any animal facility will be communicated through facility email distributions.

Yes, please plan timelines accordingly as approvals might be delayed.

Yes, animal research may continue. and/or either office can assist with welfare concerns.

Yes, if you have any questions concerning the care of animals within the vivariums contact or visit the Office of the University Veterinarian webpage for additional information.

Yes, Animal Resources and Care Division (ARCD) and Teaching and Research Animal Care Support Services (TRACSS) have contingency plans to respond to significant reductions in staffing resources and/or disruption in the supply chain of essential items need for daily husbandry and care procedures.

No, ARCD and TRACSS staffing resources are limited and we current cannot accommodate requests to perform research activities including rodent breeding colony management.

Yes, but investigators should consider multiple factors prior to initiating new order or import requests. 

Commercial animal suppliers remain in operation but could limit or stop animal production or delivery based on their organization’s COVID-19 management plan.

Other institutions may stop or postpone animal export activities. Furthermore, rodents received at Virginia Tech through the import process are quarantined to assess health status and ensure protection of existing animal colony health status. Imported animals are not available to conduct study procedures until release from quarantine. 

Some studies may have less impact on resources, budgets, and careers than others. Investigators need to consider consequences involved if studies cannot be completed.

Emergency management plans will be followed. Animal Resources and Care Division (ARCD) and Teaching and Research Animal Care Support Services (TRACSS) personnel are considered emergency personnel and will continue to provide daily animal observation and husbandry procedures that include the provision of feed and water, cage changing and sanitation, and observation for animal health and welfare concerns. Colleges, departments, and other entities responsible for animals housed in other locations will implement individual contingency plans.

Animals can be moved only to other Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) -approved facilities approved on their IACUC protocol. New housing locations must be approved by the IACUC and appropriate animal transfers within and between facilities are required. If flexibility of housing is required, please submit an amendment to the IACUC protocol as soon as possible to allow for approval time.

Yes, documented daily (or an appropriate interval) health check s as approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) are required to ensure an animal’s health and welfare.If daily health checks are not possible, provide justification for a proposed interval that will not impact the health or welfare of the animal. Please submit the request to the IACUC through an IACUC amendment. Please allow appropriate time from submission to approval.

Contingency plan guidance provided by the IACUC can be accessed at the following page.