Animal Use Protocols

All animal care and use (research, teaching, and testing) must be reviewed and approved by the Animal Care Committee prior to starting a research project. The committee ensures the study is ethical, that the animals are treated humanely, and that the appropriate species and minimum number of animals are being used. Follow the steps below to prepare for and complete your Animal Use Protocol application. 

Early Release of Funds

The sole function of the Early Release of Funds process is to permit access (when required) to research funds for administrative start-up costs/procedures (e.g. paying Research Assistants to perform a literature review, purchase lab equipment, etc.) prior to the use of animals of any kind.  Early Release of Funds is granted for a period of 6 months.

For more information regarding Early Release of Funds, please contact


For general inquiries, please contact

Prepare and complete your Animal Use Protocol application

Register in the IRISS system if you have not already done so. Your research team, including any students, postdocs, and administrative support, must also register in IRISS to be assigned to your protocol.

Request access to the Animal Health Unit website for information on who to contact and what details are required for your animal use protocol. The Animal Health Unit website contains standard operating procedures, a list of available animal user training and links to more information and key contacts.

If assistance is required to complete your animal use protocol, contact your Protocol Administrator for guidance.

Health Sciences ACC:

Life and Environmental Sciences ACC:

Veterinary Sciences ACC:

All Principal Investigators and their laboratory or teaching personnel working with animals must register and complete mandatory animal user training prior to starting any work with animals or animal-derived tissues. Visit the Institutional Animal User Training Program website for further information.

Complete and submit your Animal Use Protocol application in the IRISS system. Once submitted, your application goes to the ACC for review. There are monthly submission deadlines which are posted on the Animal Health Unit website. Assuming your application is submitted prior to the monthly deadline, review by the ACC takes approximately 4 weeks.


University of Calgary Animal Research and Education Executive Committee

Animal Health Unit

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Research Integrity Policy


UCARE Terms of Reference



The university community is invited to send any request, concern, advice, suggestion, or comments directly to the UCARE Executive Committee at

The University of Calgary is working to promote research, collaboration, and scholarly activity and we have identified enhancements in animal care services as a productive means to improve research conditions, enable researchers to excel, and assist in achieving the goals of Eyes High.

UCARE (University of Calgary Animal Research and Education Executive Committee) allows us to optimize and improve this key aspect of the university's research activities and mission. UCARE is guided by an Executive Committee. The UCARE Executive Committee works to achieve these objectives and importantly, the Committee will serve as a direct point of contact for ANY issue dealing with animal care at the University of Calgary.

UCARE is not meant to replace the existing routine communications of animal care committees, veterinarians, facility managers and staff regarding daily operations. It is, however, a one-stop portal for broad or unresolved issues that appear beyond such channels. Our intention is to help improve communication between all stakeholders of animal care services in the university, and in so doing facilitate research and teaching that is reliant on animal care services.  

Dr. Doug Morck, University Veterinarian is the Chair of the UCARE Executive Committee. The Committee reports to the Vice-President (Research) office, through Dr. Andre Buret, Associate Vice-President (Research). The Terms of Reference of the UCARE Executive Committee, and more information about UCARE, can be found at the secure-access University of Calgary Animal Health Unit website.