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Breeder Informational Cards

OAR Informational Sheet for Researchers:

Breeder Informational Cards

 

Purpose: The purpose of this document is to provide guidance on the Office of Animal Resources (OAR) use of rodent Breeder Informational Cards.  The intent of these cards is to support labs managing breeding colonies in maintaining compliance with cage size/housing density requirements as required in The Eighth Edition of the Guide (National Research Council. 2011. Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals: Eight Edition. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.)

 

Reminders:

  • Handling of rodent breeding cages by OAR, including weaning, tailing, ear notching for genetic material and separation of mis-sexed cages that result in pregnancy, incurs a $25 fee for service. 
  • OAR does not set-up breeder pairs or harems in colony rooms
  • Managing rodent breeding cages within rodent Importation Quarantine rooms:
  • Breeder cage setup per investigator instructions will incur an hourly charge
  • Weaning, tailing, ear notching for genetic material and separating harems will be charged at the $5/cage fee

 

New *Attention* breeder card: Working with pups on pups, late weaning, harem with pups and mis-sexed cages.

 

Pups on pups (P)

  • When OAR finds two litters in a breeder cage, OAR will place a bright green *Attention* Breeder card with “Pups on pups” marked, stating that two litters of pups were found in the cage
    • Card will detail:
      • Pups on pups; date found (written by OAR husbandry staff on the date it was found); printed note stating “ Lab has until end of DATE to correct finding before incurring a charge
        • DATE is one day after the two litters were identified by OAR staff
Example: Mice

  • 1 female, 1 male, 2 litters found on Monday 3/27/2017
  • If pups on pups has not been corrected by the lab at the end of the day on Tuesday 3/28/17, OAR husbandry staff will wean the litter on Wednesday 3/29/17 when they are working in the room and the lab will incur a charge
  • Charge includes: writing cage cards, setting-up new cages, weaning
  • Please note that there can be exceptions:
    • Small weanlings with an orange card  – a member of the OAR vet staff has identified that more than one pup from different litters may remain in the cage with the dam (orange card present on the cage)
    • Lab has IACUC approval - an IACUC exemption has been approved for housing more than one litter in a cage.  Special labeling (yellow informational card) must be present and confirmation by reviewing the IACUC-approved Animal Protocol must be obtained

Weaning (W)

  • Charge applies to each breeder cage from which mice/rats are weaned
    • Includes breeding colonies managed by OAR and late weaning
  • Charge includes: writing cage cards, setting-up new cages, weaning
  • Late weaning: OAR will wean non-OAR managed breeding cages when pups are at least 25 days of age or older:
    • When OAR notices a litter that is at least 23 days of age
      • OAR will place a bright green *Attention* Breeder card with “Litter needs weaning” marked
    • Card will detail:
      • Litter needs weaning; Date found (written by OAR husbandry staff on the date it was found); printed note stating “Lab has until end of DATE to correct finding before incurring a charge”
        • Date is one day after the 23 day or older pups were noticed
Example:

    • If the weanlings have not been weaned by the end of the day on Thursday 5/11/17, OAR husbandry staff will wean the litter on Friday 5/12/17 when they are working in the room and the lab will incur a charge
    • 1 female, 1 male, 1 litters found on Wednesday 5/10/2017

Divide Harem Cage (D)

  • OAR will separate harems in mouse cages only when a dam has given birth and the cage is non-compliant with space requirements
  • This term will also be used to denote a rat breeder cage where a litter is born and a male rat is present in the cage with the dam/female rat
  • Charge includes: creation of new cage cards, separating animals
  • OAR will separate a harem cage no earlier than two days after the litter was first noticed
    • When OAR notices a harem breeder cage that has given birth
      • OAR will place a bright green *Attention* Breeder card with “Harem with pups” marked, stating that the dam and pups needs to be separated within the next day
    • Card will detail:
      • Harem with pups; date found (written by OAR husbandry staff on the date it was found); printed note stating “Lab has until end of DATE to correct finding before incurring a charge”

Date is one day after the harem cage with pups was noticed

Example:

    • If the pregnant female and the dam have not been separated by the end of the day on Wednesday 6/21/17, OAR husbandry staff will divide the harem cage on Thursday 6/22/17 when they are working in the room and the lab will incur a charge
    • 2 female, 1 male, 1 litter found on Tuesday 6/20/17
  • Examples of mouse harem breeding schemes and how OAR will separate them if needed:
    • 2 females, 1 litter
      • This is acceptable housing density
      • If the second female gives birth, the females and the litters need to be separated
    • 2 females, 1 male, 1 litter
      • Separate the female with the litter
      • Leave the male with the second female
    • 3 females, 1 male, 1 litter
      • Separate the female with the litter
      • Leave the male with the 2 other females

Mis-sexed cage (MX)

  • This charge is applied when a lab incorrectly sexes mice and this results in unwanted pregnancy or litters
  • OAR will separate mis-sexed cages only when a dam has given birth and the cage is non-compliant with space requirements
  • Charge includes: separation of pregnant female, setting-up breeder cage and breeder cage card
  • OAR will separate the mis-sexed cage no earlier than two days after the litter was first noticed
    • When OAR notices a mis-sexed cage that has given birth
      • OAR will place a bright green *Attention* Breeder card with “Mis-sexed cage” marked, stating that the dam and pups needs to be separated within the next day
    • Card will detail:
      • Mis-sexed cage; date found (written by OAR husbandry staff on the date it was found); printed note stating “Lab has until end of DATE to correct finding before incurring a charge”
        • Date is one day after the mis-sexed cage with pups was noticed
Example:

    •  
      • 4 female, 1 male, 1 litter found on Thursday 8/10/17
      • If the pregnant female and the litter, in addition to the male, have not been separated by the end of the day on Friday 8/11/17, OAR husbandry staff will divide the female with the litter, male and remaining females on Saturday  8/12/17 when they are working in the room and the lab will incur a charge
      • Lab will need to monitor remaining females for signs of pregnancy and separate accordingly

 

Last updated 2/12/19 

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