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Memorial University of Newfoundland

  Memorial University of Newfoundland

Institutional Animal Care

Approval Date: N/A

Effective Date: 2004-09-04

Review Date: 2017-05-01


The President


To ensure the humane use and care of animals in the advancement and transmission of knowledge.


All use of animals in university programmes including teaching and research and other users of animals who are not affiliated with the University but who are using University facilities.


Animal — Refers to vertebrate animals. It is recognized, however, that in regard to ethical issues surrounding the experimental use of animals it may be necessary to include some invertebrates insofar as consideration should be given to the complexity of the central nervous system of a species and its sentience, rather than any physical appearance and phylogenetic relationship to the human.


The University normally accepts as Policy, the principles established by the Canadian Council on Animal Care (CACC) as published in their guides.  As well, there must be adherence to all pertinent federal, provincial and municipal regulations.

The Institutional Animal Care Committee (IACC) is responsible for animal care at the University. The Committee reports to and is appointed by the President or his/her delegate. Further details on the composition and operating procedures of the IACC are in the terms of reference for the Committee.

Responsibilities of the Institutional Animal Care Committee (IACC) shall be:

  1. To advise on policy and procedures for the use of animals;
  2. To advise on matters relating to the use of animals, both living and post-mortem;
  3. To evaluate the proposed use of animals to determine whether or not the use is in accordance with university policy and procedure.  No use of animals may occur unless it meets with the approval of the Committee in accordance with these policies and procedures. (See CCAC, Guide, Volume I, 2nd., Page 7 & 9, 1993).
  4. a. To establish and implement procedures for the review of proposals;

    b. All initial applications are to be considered by the entire Committee.  Annual renewal applications to continue work previously approved under category A and B of invasiveness, will normally be examined by a subcommittee consisting of the Chairman, the Executive Secretary and any other member of the Committee.  The subcommittee review may not be repeated more than two times for a given protocol.  Annual renewal applications of categories C, D and E will have to come to the full Committee to review all complaints on animal care brought to the attention of the IACC. The Committee will then inform the Departmental or Divisional Heal and the faculty member concerned of the complaint.  When the complaint concerns procedure already approved, it will be answered by the Committee Chair.  If the complaint involves unauthorized or unacceptable procedures, a subcommittee comprising two or more committee members will be appointed to investigate.  One member of this subcommittee will be the university committee member from the department involved.  If such a complaint is against a member of the IACC, the President or his delegate will appoint some other person to the subcommittee.  This subcommittee will consult with the committee members and the faculty members concerned.

    5.  Notwithstanding the generality of items 1 and 2 above, the committee shall be concerned with:    

a. The standards of facilities, equipment, and care of animals;

b. The procedures for ensuring health and comfort of experimental animals;

c. The training and qualifications of personnel that are engaged in the care of animals;

d. The procedures for prevention of unnecessary pain including the use of anaesthetics and analgesics;

e. The procedure for euthanasia of animals; and

f. The maintenance of interest in the development of alternatives to animals in research.

B. The Director of Animal Care Services

The Vice President (Research) appoints the Director of Animal Care Services.  The Director shall be qualified in an appropriate scientific discipline, have experience with a variety of species and be a competent administrator.  The Director shall have the following responsibilities:

  1. Establish and promote participation in educational programs which will, at the technical level, improve the quality and efficiency of animal care, and at the professional level, assist in the proper training of prospective investigators in the use of laboratory animals;
  2. Act as Executive Secretary of the IACC;
  3. Ensure that periodic inspections of Animal Care facilities are undertaken to determine compliance with Animal Care policy. The inspection of laboratories of individual faculty members who have had their protocols to work on animals duly authorized may take place at any time that is mutually agreed upon by the Director of Animal Care and the faculty member concerned;
  4. Ensure adherence to the established standards of Animal Care;
  5. Maintain liaison with the Canadian Council on Animal Care;
  6. Report to the IACC the need for action when it is observed that animals are not being used in accordance with approved protocols;
  7. Decide on a termination of life of those animals that are undergoing severe and protracted pain.  Those animals must be destroyed as soon as possible and not be permitted to linger until their inevitable death. The principal investigator shall be informed that such a procedure is taking place.

C. Principal Investigator or Course Instructor

The principal investigator on a research project or the instructor of a course will:

  1. Be familiar with the current guides published by the Canadian Council on Animal Care.
  2. Complete the required protocol forms, obtain the Committee's approval for the use of animals before the project is initiated, and secure the renewal for
    continuing projects or courses.  The approved protocol is not to be modified subsequently without prior approval of the Committee.
  3. Ensure that animals used for research and teaching are handled in as humane a manner as is consistent with the procedure under study.
  4. Seek advice from the Director of Animal Care in the case of problems with animals.
  5. Inform Animal Care Services through the submission of the animal utilization protocol, of all purchases or acquisitions of animals.  For animals attained from commercial sources, wild caught, or from University colonies or herds, Animal Care Services must be notified before the animals are obtained.

Related Documents

Addendum on Peer Review Policy
Institutional Animal Care Committee (IACC) - Terms of Reference


For inquiries related to this policy:

Research Grant and Contract Services 864-8251

Sponsor: Vice-President (Research)

Category: Research

Policy Amendment History

Date: 2019-05-29 10:45:23

This policy was replaced with a new version. Comment provided: Connected definitions using the definitions from the glossary.

Date: 2022-08-29 14:26:36

This policy was replaced with a new version. Comment provided: 08/29/2022 update broken links

Procedure for Approval and Appeals for Use of Animals

Approval Date: N/A

Responsible Unit: Animal Care Services

  1. Before animals can be used for research and teaching, the researcher must file an application to the IACC using the authorized protocol form describing the proposed use of animals; the application must be approved by   the IACC before proceeding.
  2. When approval is given, the secretariat of the Committee will so advise the applicant and the Vice-president (Research).
  3. When approval is given subject to minor amendment, the Executive Secretary will transmit details of the amendment to the applicant and, after modification of the protocol, approval will be given.
  4. When approval is withheld or the protocol is rejected, the investigator concerned   is entitled to appear before the Committee to present additional information for consideration.
  5. Appeals by applicants will go directly to the President and, if necessary will be handled on the basis of procedure as outlined by the CCAC.