Animal care staff must complete training, but training may be on the job training or from the American Association of Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS) library. Animal care staff are supervised and trained by the Director of the Research Support Facility (RSF) Director. Documentation of training for animal care staff should be maintained by the RSF Director Documentation should include the type of training completed (including the source of training, i.e. AALAS, investigator, RSF Director), the person who received training, and the date of the training. Topics for animal care staff training should include, but are not limited to:
- DePaul policy and RSF policy
- Animal husbandry
- Animal handling and restraint
- Animal behavior and health observations
- Sexing and breeding
- Caging/tank systems and equipment mechanics
- Cage/tank sanitation
- Facility sanitation
- Environmental monitoring
- Vermin control
- Personal safety and hygiene
- Disaster plan response procedures
Additional species-specific training should be provided to Animal Care staff by individual investigators with animals housed in the RSF. For example, species-specific training regarding how to provide daily care or how to feed and water the animal should be provided by individual PIs to animal care staff using written SOPS (that become attachments to the Research Support Facility (RSF) Policy and Procedure Manual). Any training provided to animal care personnel should be documented and the documentation should be provided to the RSF Director. Copies of the training documentation should be kept in the animal facility.
Animal Care Staff may complete continuing education by any of the methods listed above for investigators as long as the training is pertinent to their role and duties as animal technicians. For example, the AALAS library has training programs specifically for animal care technicians. Animal Care Staff may also meet the continuing education requirement by receiving ongoing on-the-job training from investigators and the RSF Director or the RSF Assistant Director. The RSF Director should ensure that any training received is documented and documentation of training is kept in the RSF where it can be reviewed by the IACUC.
Animal care staff members are encouraged to complete certification programs to demonstrate their expertise and proficiency.