COVID-19 Updates on Animal Care Services

March 16, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

The COVID-19 situation is rapidly evolving around the world. Queen’s University administrators are actively monitoring the situation with our community partners. Although at the present time there are no active cases within our community and KFL&A Public Health continues to advise that the risk to our community remains low, our primary concern is the health and wellbeing of faculty, research staff, students as well as animal welfare.

We are reviewing and updating our animal facility pandemic response plan and will be communicating updates with you regularly as the situation evolves. Given the current unpredictability relating to COVID-19, we recommend that researcher groups consider the following:

  • Avoid initiating any long-term animal studies.
  • Keep animal breeding to a minimum.
  • Prioritize any precious/unique animal lines and cryopreserve these lines.

Animal Care Services will monitor animal care on a daily basis and make necessary decisions regarding the continued maintenance of animals and services. Decisions may include:

  • Limiting or temporarily discontinuing extra services such as training and technical services
  • Training and redeployment of alternate staff (other university staff members, etc)
  • Altering the cage change schedule • Limiting or temporarily discontinuing import/export services and animal orders
  • Altering Standard Operating Procedures to ensure the welfare of the animals
  • Restricting breeding, reducing animal numbers, and/or terminating animals

All faculty, staff and students should remain informed with regards to Institutional policies related to COVID-19 on the dedicated Queen’s University COVID-19 website.

If you have any questions/concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me.


Andrew Winterborn, DVM DACLAM