Import and Export of Animals


Importing to UK 

DLAR (Division of Laboratory Animal Resources) coordinates the shipment of all rodents into and out of the University of Kentucky vivarium and other housing areas. Our Shipping Coordinator requests and receives health information from other institutions, submits all health information to DLAR veterinarians for review and approval, issues shipping approvals to other institutions, and coordinates final shipping arrangements with those institutions.

Investigators should allow at least 1 month for completion of paperwork and arrival of shipments. International shipments generally take longer than domestic shipments. Shipments of animals with incomplete or questionable health status can take much longer (3-6 months if additional testing of colony animals, quarantine, and/or rederivation is warranted.)

Principal Investigators must have the following items in place before any rodents can be shipped to the DLAR animal facility.

  1. An IACUC approved Animal Care and Use Protocol Application (this will take 6 to 8 weeks).
  2. An established account with the DLAR business office to cover costs of shipping, animal care, and diagnostic testing of incoming colony animals, when needed.
  3. A completed and approved Request to Import Animals from Other Institutions (pdf, 2pgs) form. This form is linked above and on our Forms page.  You may also request a copy from our Shipping Coordinator, Ronda Combs.  The competed form should be returned to Ronda Combs or the DLAR office for processing via e-mail, fax.
  4. A requisition for non-approved vendor animals through Cayuse AO.  For assistance with Cayuse AO, contact Cheryl Carmichael in the DLAR business office.

The Request to Import Rodents form must be filled out completely. Missing information can result in significant delays in processing the request.

IMPORTANT: Incoming shipments of rodents will only be approved if their health status is compatible with that of the University of Kentucky vivarium. Any rodents shipped without approval will be euthanatized upon arrival.

If the health status of incoming animals is questionable, the animals must be quarantined off-site (commercial vendor or UK’s remote quarantine/isolation facility) until their health status is determined. Animals testing positive for rodent pathogens will not be allowed into the UK vivarium. In this instance, the DLAR veterinarian will contact the investigator to discuss other options. The costs of quarantine and other services must be borne by the investigator.

If you have any questions about these procedures, please contact our shipping coordinator Ronda Combs.


Acclimation and Quarantine 

Animals imported to UK must undergo a period of acclimation and quarantine before use in breeding colonies and/or any research procedures. Form more information, please see our Guidelines for Acclimation for Newly Received Laboratory Animals.



Researchers looking to export their laboratory animals must complete and return the Request to Export form (pdf, 2pgs) and return it to Ronda Combs. Animals will only be shipped after authorization from the receiving institution's veterinarian is received. 

Shipping and processing fees apply to all domestic and international shipments.