CVTEA accreditation policies and procedures

Last update to this section: January 2024

Appendix B – Use of Animals in Veterinary Technology Teaching Programs

The use of animals in veterinary technology teaching programs is discussed under Standards 4 (Physical Facilities and Equipment), 5 (Resources for Clinical Instruction), and 10 (Curriculum). The following are provided for clarification of accreditation requirements:

  1. CVTEA endorses the principles of humane care and use of animals
    1. Care and use of animals must follow USDA regulations as authorized under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) for all animal use.
    2. Animal use in teaching must follow current best practices of humane care and use.
  2. The transportation, care, and use of animals in veterinary technology teaching programs must be in accordance with the regulations of the USDA and applicable state and local requirements.
  3. If live animals are to be used, a written narrative justifying that use must be provided to the institutional animal care and use committee (IACUC) and faculty must be confident in their students' understanding and familiarity with the procedures to be undertaken so as to minimize any pain and/or distress to the animals involved.
  4. All animal activities conducted by a program must be reviewed and approved by an IACUC.
    1. A written program of veterinary care for animals used in the program must be on file.
    2. Animal use protocols must contain all information required by AWA guidelines.
    3. Repeated use of individual animals for teaching laboratories must be specifically reviewed by the IACUC to ensure appropriate conditioning procedures and frequency of use.
    4. Teaching procedures, which may cause more than momentary pain or distress to the animal, must be performed with appropriate sedation, analgesia, or anesthesia.
    5. Euthanasia methods must be in accordance with AVMA Guidelines on the Euthanasia of Animals.
    6. Prolonged restraint, multiple major surgical procedures, and food or fluid restriction from animals for teaching purposes must be prohibited. Exceptions must be specifically reviewed by the IACUC.
    7. Formulate and publicize the IACUC approved policy for investigating and responding to complaints of inappropriate animal care or use.
    8. Membership of the IACUC must meet AWA guidelines. It is highly recommended that programs consider having more than the minimum number of members, to allow for quorum requirements and conflict of interest on votes.
    9. Meeting frequency, quorum requirements, as well as IACUC minutes and reports must conform to AWA guidelines.
  5. Off-campus providers of instructional support must meet objective requirements set by the program regarding the care and use of animals, physical facilities and available equipment.

Recommended sources for guidelines regarding humane care and use of animals:

USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

Animal Welfare Act, United States Code, Title 7 (Agriculture), Chapter 54 (Transportation, Sale and Handling of Certain Animals),

AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association). Guidelines on the Euthanasia of Animals

Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals. Institute of Laboratory Animal Resources, Commission on Life Sciences, National Research Council. National Research Council. National Academy Press, Washington, D.C. 8th Edition 2011.

Guide for the Care and Use of Agricultural Animals in Agricultural Research and Teaching, American Dairy Science Association, the American Society of Animal Science, and the Poultry Science Association

The IACUC Handbook (3rd Edition) by Jerald Silverman, Mark A. Suckow & Sreekant Murthy. CRC Press, 2000 NW Corporate Blvd, Boca Raton, FL 33431 ISBN 978-1466555648. 2014

Animal Care Inspection Guide

Guidance for CVTEA IACUC Assessment (guidance only, not all-inclusive)

  1. IACUC Membership and Function
    1. IACUC is comprised of minimally 3 members appointed by the CEO or designee, including a veterinarian (does not have to be the AV, can be a designee), a non-affiliated member (has no association with the institution, and a chair. The attending veterinarian should not serve as Chair. If the committee has more than 3 members, no more than 3 members can be from the same administrative unit of the institution.
    2. Conducts semiannual review of the animal care and use program.
    3. Conducts semiannual facility inspections using AWA as the basis for evaluation. At least two members conduct inspections, and no member can be excluded.
    4. Methods for reporting and investigating animal welfare concerns are in place and are publicized.
    5. Reviews and investigates complaints or concerns about animal care and use in the program from all sources (public or program personnel).
    6. Procedures are in place for review and approval, of animal activities including significant changes (including personnel changes) to approved activities
  2. IACUC Protocol Review
    1. Reviews (approves, withholds approval, requires modifications to approve) all teaching activities involving animals (including non-preserved specimens).
    2. Protocols be current, comprehensive, and accurate and undergo de novo reviews every three years.
    3. All IACUC members given list of proposed protocols prior to review.
    4. No animal teaching activity is to begin before IACUC review and approval.
    5. Documenation of any conflicts of interest in the approval of IACUC protocols (e.g. principal investigator should not vote on own protocols).
    6. Meeting minutes must include records of attendance, activities of the Committee, and Committee deliberations.
  3. Protocols for all proposed animal activities must include:
    1. Rationale for using animals.
    2. Rationale for species and number of animals used during the life of the protocol.
    3. Description of proposed use of the animals and procedures, including but not limited to frequency of procedure, complete description of procedure(s) that may be performed (may reference SOP, or skills descriptions), and intervals (how often and how many times per animal).
    4. Indication of the qualifications and experience of trained personnel that will be involved in the described procedures.
    5. Survival surgery is conducted aseptically in dedicated facilities.
    6. Appropriate provision of anesthetics, sedatives, and analgesics described.
    7. Description of preoperative and postoperative care.
    8. Complete description of method(s) of euthanasia described, when indicated.
  4. IACUC Records and Reporting Requirements
    1. Semiannual report to the Institutional Official
      1. The IACUC conducts program review and facility inspection reports (including all noted deficiencies and their severity). A report of this review must be signed by a majority of IACUC members (electronic means acceptable) and submitted to the Institutional Official every 6 months.
      2. Reports include departures from compliance or deficiencies, a plan and schedule for their correction, and minority views.
    2. Maintenance of Records
      1. IACUC meeting minutes and semiannual reports to the Institutional Official are maintained for 3 years
  5. USDA
    1. If the program is not registered with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the program has confirmed with the USDA that registration was not required. Document the date and method used for the most recent confirmation.
    2. Reports to the USDA if applicable and USDA inspection reports are available.