Veterinary Care Program
Both the Animal Welfare Act and the PHS Policy require the designation of an institutional attending veterinarian. Dr. Mary Sauer is the attending veterinarian at Iowa State University. The attending veterinarian is also a permanent member of the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC). This satisfies the federal requirement that one member of the IACUC must be a veterinarian with training and/or experience in laboratory animal medicine who has “direct or delegated program responsibility for activities involving animals at the institution” (PHS Policy, 1986).
The stated responsibilities and duties of the attending veterinarian, as listed below, may be carried out by the attending veterinarian or by his/her designee:
- Observation of teaching, testing and research animals to assess their health and welfare
- Prevention, control, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases and injuries
- Provision of guidance to animal users regarding handling, restraint, anesthesia, analgesia, and euthanasia
- Monitoring of surgery programs and postsurgical care
LAR Veterinary Staff
The LAR veterinary staff consists of the director, three clinical veterinarians, and one program coordinator. Members of the veterinary staff are available from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and the veterinarians are on call on a rotational basis on weekends and holidays.
Animal caretakers working in each facility are expected to observe each animal under their care daily and report any illness, injury, or death to the veterinary staff. In addition, the animals in each facility are observed at least once every two weeks by a member of the veterinary staff.
On receiving a report of sick or injured animals, the clinical veterinarian examines the animals and consults with the principal investigator (PI) or the individuals authorized (those listed on the a-tune protocol) to approve medical care or euthanasia. If the PI or his/her designee cannot be reached in a timely manner, the LAR veterinarian will determine the course of action.
The clinical veterinarians oversee the quarantine and conditioning programs. Treatments are carried out by the veterinary staff or animal caretakers under the direction of the clinical veterinarian unless other arrangements have been made in advance with the PI.
LAR veterinarians are available for consultation with PIs in areas such as restraint, handling, anesthesia, euthanasia, and experimental procedures. Arrangements may be made in advance for a veterinarian or other qualified individual to perform, or train laboratory personnel to perform, specified experimental procedures.