OAR Informational Sheet: Recommended Volumes for Administered Substances

Purpose:

This document provides information about administration volumes and needle sizes for commonly employed routes of fluid administration in various animal species. The volume limits are consensus figures based on published literature and are set up to maintain animal welfare and prevent potential complications, such as muscle damage with high volume intramuscular injection, or aspiration & pulmonary injury with high volume oral administration.

 

Procedures:

  • Give injections at a constant flow rate
    • No resistance should be encountered during injection
    • Do not apply overt pressure on the syringe’s plunger
  • See below for recommended volume and needle size
    • Compare the weight in the table to the weight of the animal being used in the procedure and alter dose accordingly
    • Max limit with oil-based vehicles should be half the listed max limit and may require a larger gavage needle
    • Always use the smallest needle size (largest gauge) that is applicable to the procedure

 

Precautions:

  • Do not inject into inflamed or damaged tissue unless medically indicated
  • Injecting relatively large volumes of solutions that are below body temperature may lead to hypothermia
  • Inject separate drugs/compounds at different sites to avoid cross reaction of chemicals
  • Limit subcutaneous administration to 2-3 sites per day
  • Limit intramuscular administration to 2 sites at one time
  • Exceptions apply when medically indicated or scientifically justified, consult with Office of Animal Resources (OAR) veterinary staff for guidance

 

Recommended Maximum Volumes and Needle Sizes per Route and per Species

Species & weight

Per os (oral)

Subcutaneous

Intramuscular

Intraperitoneal

Intravenous

Rat

200g

4 ml

 16 G

4 ml

20 G

    1. ml

21 G

4 ml

21 G

2 ml

23 G

Mouse

25g

0.25 ml

 18 G

0.5 ml

 20 G

0.05 ml

23 G

0.25 ml

21 G

0.125 ml

25 G

Hamster

100g

4 ml

 18 G

2 ml

 20 G

    1. ml

21 G

2 ml

21 G

1 ml,

25 G

Guinea pig

200g

4 ml

2 ml

20 G

    1. ml

21 G

2 ml

21 G

1 ml

23 G

Rabbit

4kg

80 ml

20 ml

20 G

0.5-1 ml

20 G

40 ml

20 G

20 ml

21 G

Cat

5kg

100 ml

100 ml

20 G

1 ml

 20 G

100 ml

20 G

25 ml

21 G

Dog

10kg

200 ml

50 ml

20 G

5 ml

20 G

200 ml

20 G

50 ml

20 G

Pig

25kg

250 ml

62.5 ml

 20 G

2-5 ml

20 G

250 ml

20 G

250 ml

18 G

Ferret

1kg

10 ml

5 ml

21 G

0.5 ml

23 G

10 ml

21 G

5 ml

21 G

Goat/Sheep

45kg

450 ml

450 ml

19 G

5 ml

18 G

450 ml

19 G

450 ml

18 G

Updated 06/14/2017