Animal Care Applications & Procedures

Animal Care

The UBC Animal Care Committee is the interface between you, UBC, the Canadian Council on Animal Care and the public.  The Committee has a very comprehensive website containing all the information you will need to complete your application. This is an outline of the procedure for your reference.

1. Complete the apropriate training course(s).

This can be done at any time after your arrival at UBC but before your begin working with animals. The Canadian Council on Animal Care (CCAC) has made training in animal research a requirement. UBC has training courses that meet this requirement. Investigators and all members of their research team who will be using animals must be able to demonstrate knowledge of techniques and ethics of using animals in research by completing and passing at minimum the Biology and Husbandry of the Laboratory Rodent course, and any others deemed required for your specific experiments.

Upon successful review of test results by the UBC Animal Care Committee, an Animal Care Certificate will be issued, and the certificate number will be associated with each researcher on the RISe system.

2. Complete and submit your application

PDF reference versions of the application can be found online, BUT all applications are done online through the RISe system, these PDFs are for reference only.

You will need to have the following information to fill out an application:

  • PI, contact person, co-investigators and study team names (all must already have been added to the RISe system to be added to the application)
  • Start and end date of the study
  • Funding source information
  • Emergency contact name
  • CCAC animal type and use information
  • Research Objectives (lay summary of purpose and value of study)
  • Animal use details, including;
  • Details of procedures, including drug dosages, monitoring, endpoints
  • alternatives considered
  • specific animal strains used with justification
  • total number of animal used with justification

A few notes on filling out the application: This application is extremely detailed, and many of the questions are required by the Canadian Council on Animal Care. These are intended to ensure ethical and humane treatment of animals used in experiments. If you are interested in how the reviews are conducted, you can ask to sit on a review (the last Monday morning of every month) or, even better, put your name forward to become a member. The administrative staff of the Committee are very open and willing to answer questions. The best people to contact are Lynn McDonald and Roger Chow.

  • When you fill out the application, keep in mind that the Committee is composed of individuals from various backgrounds, including students, animal technicians and lay persons. They may not necessarily belong to your area of research or perfectly understand it. They need to be assured that you know what you are doing with animals. So, write the protocol and answer the questions in simple but detailed and accurate terms. For example, don’t just say you will do a 3-hour long open heart surgery, place a stent, close up and go home. Explain why you need to do it, describe the main surgical procedures, e.g. what a stent is, drugs used, volume of injections (if any) etc., and how the animal will be cared for post-surgery and by whom.
  • Please note that applications funded by a for-profit agency (Industry) that require ethical review by the UBC Animal Care Committee will be charged a fee of $500. Send a cheque or a journal voucher to ORS. Check the web site for more information or contact Roger Chow at or (604) 827-5115.
  • When you submit your application, it will go first to the Department  for approval. If your application is urgent and you are aiming to get it submitted for a specific Council meeting, be sure to submit it on RISe early enough that Departmental approval can be acquired before the meeting deadline.

3. Complete any modifications to the protocol recommended by the committee (if required)

Once you have submitted your application, any changes or amendments are submitted the same way. Your Inbox on the RISe system will inform you when any changes, amendments, or provisos to your application are requested and how to deal with them.

It is very important to document the changes you make according to the requests. The best way to do this is to copy the (usually numbered) requests into a document, and write a short description of what you did to address the request after each one.

Example:

  • 1. Transgenic mouse strain mentioned under breeding protocol SOP not listed in section on Animal Information. Please add.

The requested information has been added.

  • 2.  Specifics about study methodologies not included in protocol. Please add this information

A revised protocol has been attached as requested.

This response will be included with your re-submission to detail the areas where the ACC will look for changes.

You only have to change the attachments associated with revisions. If there were no comments on a particular attachment, you are able to leave it as is.

4. When your protocol is approved, print a copy of your Certificate of Approval

Once you have received approval, you are ready to begin your research. Once every year, a renewal, which does not require full Committee approval, will have to be completed. Every three years, you will have to resubmit an updated protocol for full Committee review.