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Frequently Asked Questions

Animal Health

During normal business hours (8am – 4:00pm, M-F): Your facility manager. If the manager is unavailable, contact the veterinarian on call. An emergency call list is posted in each facility. Non-emergency clinical case requests can be submitted to

After hours, weekends and holidays: Contact the veterinarian on-call. An emergency veterinary call list is posted in each facility.

OLAC sends regular updates on the current health status of rodent colonies to facility managers. Requests for current status can be made to OLAC or the facility manager

In-house laboratory services are available through the UT College of Veterinary Medicine; available services include clinical pathology, parasitology, endocrinology, histology, necropsy, and microbiology.

Rodent viral serology, PCR testing, and genetic monitoring are available through commercial laboratories. Contact OLAC to arrange these services.

Information for Investigators

You must submit a IACUC Protocol Form for Use of Live Vertebrates. Once the IACUC makes a decision regarding the disposition of your protocol, you will receive email notification. Notification of IACUC approval is required before live vertebrate work can begin. Contact the UTK IACUC office at 865-974-3631 or visit the UTK IACUC website for further information.

Once approved, animal users can reach out to their facility manager to make arrangements for ordering animals, housing needs, etc.

Contact your facility manager to find per diem rates. Principal investigators can access this list by logging into the IACUC SharePoint (must request access upon login).

  • The animal care and use program at the University of Tennessee is accredited by the Association for the Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care, International (AAALAC, International).
  • The University’s Public Health Service Assurance number is D16-00397.
  • The University’s USDA registration number is 63-R-0105.​
  • Standard grant language​​

Entrance to all animal facilities is controlled by key and/or card access. Contact your facility manager for information regarding facility authorization.

All acquisition, procurement, or movement of non-agricultural research animals to or from the University of Tennessee animal facilities or laboratories must be specifically approved by the IACUC via an approved protocol, and the attending veterinarian or his/her designee.

See the OLAC Policy on Animal Procurement

Rodents/rabbits from approved vendor sources

  • To initiate a request for animals, contact the facility manager where your animals will be housed. The facility manager will provide you with the necessary animal requisition form. Facility managers may order animals from approved vendors without prior approval from OLAC. Approved rodent/rabbit vendors include: Charles River Laboratories, Jackson Labs, Envigo, RSI, and Taconic.

Rodents from non-approved vendors or inter-institutional transfers

  • Receipt of rodents from non-approved sources must be approved in advance by OLAC. Because a number of factors may delay shipment and/or use of such animals, requests should made well in advance of intended use.
  • The principal investigator must complete and submit an animal requisition form to the facility manager where animals will be housed.
  • The facility manager along with the principal investigator must complete appropriate sections of the Rodent History Questionnaire​ and the Quarantine Procedure forms. To access these forms, click on the drop down box “Receiving Rodent from Non-Approved Vendors” here.
  • The completed Rodent History Questionnaire and Rodent Quarantine Procedures forms must be submitted to Chris Carter at
  • OLAC will contact the institution or vendor of origin to request completion of the Rodent History Questionnaire and submission of monitoring reports.
  • After receipt and review of completed documents and recent health monitoring reports, OLAC veterinarians will make a decision regarding importation. If permission is granted, an OLAC veterinarian will specify the duration and intensity of quarantine procedures. Quarantine will involve either contact bedding sentinels and/or direct testing.

Procurement of dogs and cats

  • Contact the facility manager where animals will be housed.

To facilitate the approval process and to maintain appropriate records, an Animal Transfer Request form must be submitted to the facility manager who will verify the species, strain, and number of animals against the approved IACUC protocols. The manager can approve animal transfers between protocols of an individual PI. Transfer of animals between two PI’s requires the signature of the attending Veterinarian or his/her designee. The Animal Transfer Request can be found here.

Upon request, OLAC will provide the necessary health reports and facility information to the receiving institution. The receiving institution should email information requests to OLAC.

All animal movement must adhere to the following principles:

Movement of animals must have IACUC approval via a protocol describing the transport and designation of the destination as a study or satellite area.
Transport containers must be sealed and completely covered to inconspicuously conceal the animals during transit.​

​Animal users can view the Animal Transportation Policy by visiting UTK IACUC website and accessing the UTK Community login page.

A Tennessee research license and a DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) registration are required to procure controlled substances for use in research animals. Please visit UTK Environmental Health and Safety for more information on obtaining a DEA license for research use.

Contact OLAC to make a request or contact the building veterinarian. Additional information can be found by visiting OLAC Services​.

All personnel having contact with research and teaching animals must be knowledgeable of the University’s Occupational Health Program. Contact the occupational health nurse at or visit the Occupational Health website​ for additional information.

Biological hazards: Biosafety Office, 865-974-5547
Radiation hazards: Radiation Safety Office, 865-974-5580
Chemical hazards: Chemical Safety Office, 865-974-4904 (Agriculture campus); 865-974-5084 (Knoxville campus)

If you observe or have knowledge of activities that you believe constitute inappropriate animal care and use, you are encouraged to report these activities so that they can be investigated.

Concerns or complaints regarding animal usage within UTK should be brought directly to the attention of the people involved whenever possible.
If the concern or complaint cannot be handled directly, or if an individual wishes to report anonymously, it may be handled one of two ways:
If an emergency situation exists, the university attending veterinarian or designee should be contacted immediately. In addition, emergency contact information is posted in each animal facility. The university laboratory animal veterinarian will take any necessary immediate action.

If the situation is not an emergency, the concern or compliant should be submitted to the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee. The committee chairperson will assign an ad hoc investigative committee to investigate the concern and prepare a report for the IACUC. The IACUC will review the concern or complaint, determine what action will be taken, and notify the principal investigator of such action. Anonymous concerns or complaints can be made through the IACUC website​.

As per federal regulations, no individual will be discriminated against, or be subject to any reprisal, for reporting noncompliance.