Social/Group Housing and Enrichment

Following the recommendations outlined in the 8th Edition of the ILAR Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, and other regulatory and accrediting bodies, group housing of social mammalian species and enrichment of these animals is the default for the Division of Laboratory Animal Resources.

A variety of suitable, species appropriate, enrichment items will be provided. We will separate or regroup incompatible animals if needed. You may request individual housing if appropriate to your study. Enrichment items will be provided regardless of housing type unless specific instructions for your cohorts are received.  If you request single housing or alternatives to micro-environment (within the housing unit) enrichment, including the withdrawal of enrichment, please understand that this deviation MUST be indicated and  listed in, scientifically justified,  and approved by the IACUC in your current approved animal use protocol.  A Special request form must be filled out and presented to the DLAR staff indicating which caging this deviation involves, the length of time it will be in effect, and current contact information for your staff responsible for the group of animals involved. This information must be provided whether it is individual housing of animals on arrival, or from established groups already being housed in DLAR, withholding or limiting the enrichment items, and the dates the Special Request is to begin. If you have questions regarding this policy, please contact DLAR.

Additional items may be added as available or appropriate.

Species

Default Enrichment

Optional Enrichment

NHP

Minimum two toys in cage produce fed daily; playpen access on a rotational basis within cage quadrant; daily human interaction.

Destructible toys such as chew sticks; mirrors; food/foraging; swimming pool; swing.

Sheep

 

Stainless Steel Mirror; forage feeder; Hay bag w/timothy orchard grass mix hay

Hanging apple milk jug toy

Swine

Rubber or plastic balls, heavy chains, empty plastic milk jugs; Forage feeders

Assorted fresh fruit and vegetables, 3 Musketeers® candy bars, and Milk Bone Dog Biscuits® offered on occasion Brooms fixed to side of cage for scratching

Chicken

Feed is placed out for them to forage

Enviro-dry ®

Cat

Elevated plastic resting shelf; Corrugated paper and commercially available cat toys

 

Cat pillow

Dog

Toys, nylabones, raised beds

Starch Bones

Rabbit

Timothy cubes, assorted fresh greens and fruit, Bunny Blocks™ in various flavors, Veggie Bites™, commercial rabbit treats; Timothy Mini hay bales

Toys such as a jingle ball

Guinea Pig

Sterilized paper tubes, Polycarbonate Guinea Pig Huts® and Rodent Retreats

Commercial Guinea Pig treats, apples, and carrots

Gerbil

Sand is offered as bedding

 Sterilized paper tubes and tissues, Rodent Retreats®, Crawl Balls® Commercial Gerbil treats

Hamster

Nestlets®

Sterilized paper tubes and tissues, Rodent Retreats®, Crawl Balls®

Rat

Enviro-dry®

Sterilized paper tubes and tissues, Rodent Retreats®, Nylabone®, Crawl Balls®

Mouse

Nestlets® Enviro-dry®

Sterilized paper tubes or tissues, Shepherd Shacks® , Mouse Igloos® with or without Fast Tracs®, and mouse houses

Mouse; Nude or Hairless

Enviro-dry®

Sterilized paper tubes or tissues, Shepherd Shacks® , Mouse Igloos® with or without Fast Tracs®, and mouse houses