USDA Considering Petition to Require Additional Animal Usage Information on Annual Reports

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USDA Animal Care has received a petition requesting that we amend the Animal Welfare Act regulations to require research facilities to provide us specific information about how they are using animals in their biomedical research, testing and education.


The federal regulations currently require each facility to submit to us an annual report showing that: 1) it is adhering to professionally acceptable standards governing the care, treatment and use of animals; 2) animals used in regulated activities are listed by species and categorized by levels of pain and distress; and 3) each researcher at that facility has considered alternatives to painful procedures. Animals held at a facility but not used during the reporting period must also be listed on the annual report.


As we consider this petition, we welcome comments from interested members of the public so that we can determine an appropriate course of action.


If you would like to provide us with your comments, please follow this link, which will bring you to Docket No. APHIS-2015-0033. The deadline to submit a comment is Aug. 24, 2015, and all comments will be available for public viewing.


USDA Animal Care upholds and enforces the Animal Welfare Act. This federal law and its associated regulations set the standards for humane care and treatment that must be provided for certain animals that are: used in biomedical research/testing/education; exhibited to the public; bred for commercial sale; or transported commercially. Entities using regulated animals for regulated purposes must, among other things, provide adequate housing, sanitation, nutrition, water and veterinary care, and they must protect their animals from extreme weather and temperatures.


Please note: Posting a petition for public comment does not imply that we will launch the federal rulemaking process to amend the Animal Welfare Act regulations.



At USDA Animal Care, ensuring the welfare of the animals we regulate is at the heart of everything we do.