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Guidelines for Purchasing Animals
(Updated July 2008)

1. Basic Requirements:

Ordering animals at UCSF is subject to specific requirements, which include:

  • All animals must be purchased through the Laboratory Animal Resources Center (LARC) purchasing office (http://policies.ucsf.edu/ Academic administration policy #100-19).
  • All requested purchases of species and numbers must correspond to a current Animal Use Protocol approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC).
  • Purchase BIlling Code corresponding to an active account
  • Availability of housing
  •  Requirements for animals being acquired from investigators at other institutions are different and are listed under "Transfer of Animals from Other Institutions "
  •  If you acquire other than rodents, call the LARC Business Office for Assistance.
  •  If you acquire Rodents from other Institutions, see Rodent Shipment
    For transfer of animals from Barrier to Barrier Facility, see: Transportation Request: Barrier to Barrier Facility

2. Submission Deadlines and Animal Deliveries


  • For delivery within 48 hours, orders must be received by 9:00 a.m. for local vendors (rodents)
  • Delivery dates vary by vendor and availability of animals. Please see http://or.ucsf.edu/larc/7070-DSY.html
  • Please contact the LARC Business Office for other delivery schedules
  • To ensure the prompt handling and processing of your purchase order, please complete all the relevant information when submitting a "UCSF Animal Purchase Order Form"

Pregnant Animals: For timed pregnant animals, the requisition must be received 48 hours prior to animal’s mate date.

Holidays: During holidays, the delivery schedules may change depending on vendor’s schedule.

Weather Delays: For animals being shipped airfreight there are potential delays due to bad weather or airline delays.

3. How to order animals:

  • Complete the "UCSF Animal Purchase Order Form" and forward a copy to the LARC Business Office (Box-0564) or fax a signed copy to 476-0581.
  • To ensure the prompt handling and processing of your purchase order, please complete all the relevant information when submitting a "UCSF Animal Purchase Order Form".
  • Incomplete or illegible forms will be returned to the investigators for completion.

4. Definitions of terms

a) PI information:
    •  Date and time of the order
    •  Principal Investigator’s Name, Telephone Number
    •  IACUC Protocol Number: Enter the specific protocol under which the species and number of animals ordered are going to be used.
    •  Lab contact Person, phone Number and e-mail: Please identify the individual who should be contacted for discussion of additional information, alternative delivery schedules, availability of animals, etc.
    •  Vendor Name: Please indicate vendor preference. If none, specify "ANY".
    •  Account/Fund and Purchase Billing Code: This information is used for charging the expenses against.

Housing Requirements

    •  Animals per cage: Please specify the number of animals to be housed in a single cage
    •  Housing Type: For rodents, housing type (e.g. Barrier, Conventional, Isolation)
    Delivery Location: Specify the campus location, building and room number.
    Pick up: Animals to be used acutely the day of arrival may be picked up from LARC by Laboratory staff. This must be authorized in the approved protocol.
      All rodents acquired from non-approved vendors, or sources, are subject to a minimum of six (6) weeks quarantine prior to delivery into a barrier facility. Currently the approved vendors not requiring quarantine are Charles River, Jackson Lab (JAX), Harlan, National Cancer Institute (NCI), and Taconic.
      •  Other species (e.g. non-human Primates) may also be subject to special quarantine requirements. Please contact LARC 476- 2204 for specific information

Housing Location

    Please identify the Campus, Building and room number where animals are to be delivered.
    •  Note:
      Housing of animals must be within the LARC facilities.
    •  Housing in the PI's laboratory must be approved in the IACUC protocol

Animal Information

    Qty.: Quantity of Animals to be purchased
    Animal Species: (e.g. rats, mice, etc.)
    Animal Strain: (e.g. Sprague Dawley, CD-1, etc.)
    Sex: (Specify the required animal sex M=Male, F=Female or E=Either)
    •  USDA Category: Please identify the IACUC approved USDA category for which you are ordering the animals.
    •  Animal’s Weight or Age: Please indicate the desired age or weight upon arrival.
    •  Timed Pregnant Mate date(s): Either specify the mate date or enter the desired gestational date upon arrival of the animals.
    •  Untimed pregnant # of days: Please indicate the approximate number of days gestation upon arrival.
    •  Female with litter: If you are ordering a female with litter please specify the age of litter on arrival and the number of pups per litter. If a natural litter is required, please specify.
    Date needed: Please note the scheduled delivery dates (http://or.ucsf.edu/larc/7070-DSY.html). Deliveries outside of the scheduled dates/time may incur a significant delivery charge.


    •  Special instruction: Please clearly describe any special instructions you have regarding this purchase request.
    Authorized Signature: The Principal Investigator, or their authorized designee, must sign the purchase orders.

5. Cancellation or Changes in Orders

Cancellation or changes to an existing order must be submitted to LARC Business Office in writing by 9:00 a.m. of the day before the shipment date (Not the Arrival Date).

Cancellation notices may be submitted by:

If you have any questions about purchasing animals please call 476-2204.