National Research Council Guide For the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals 8th Edition

The National Research Council Guide for Care and Use of Laboratory Animals is used as a guideline for all aspects of research animal handling in universities, research hospitals and other laboratories where animal research is conducted.  It is the definitive guide for the care, feeding and use of laboratory animals. It was first published in 1963, and until 2011, its most recent edition was published in 1996.

In 2011 the 8th edition was released ( Among other changes, it addresses more fully the care of animals during surgery and anesthesia.  Pertinent excerpts that have been added to the 8th edition of the guideline include the following:

  • “For anesthesia delivery, the use of precision vaporizers and monitoring equipment, e.g., pulse oximeter for determining arterial blood oxygen saturation levels, increases the safety and choices of anesthetic agents for use in rodents and other small species. “   NIH Guide for Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, 8th ed., Pg 122 Paragraph 5, 2011.    
  • “Careful monitoring and timely attention to problems increase the likelihood of a successful surgical outcome (Kuhlman et al. 2008). Monitoring includes routine evaluation and recording of anesthetic depth and physiologic functions and conditions, such as body temperature, cardiac and respiratory rates and pattern (Flegal et al. 2009), and blood pressure (Kuhlman et al. 2008)…” NIH Guide for Care and Use of Laboratory Animals, 8th ed., Pg 119 Paragraph 1, 2011.