GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF CLASS
The LABORATORY ANIMAL TECHNICIAN 2 provides routine care (food, water, bedding, housing) and performs routine
technical procedures under specific conditions as required for research on a variety of research animals (e.g.,
rodents, rabbits, pigs, sheep, cats, dogs, poultry).
This is the second level of a two-level series. It is distinguished from the lower level by increased responsibility
for providing animal care and procedures under specialized projects which require attention to research criteria.
At this level, there is less concentration on routine care and feeding tasks. Employees in this class have greater
freedom to choose work priorities and less need for task instruction.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
- Technical Procedures. Typical tasks: cares for an animal population under designated environmental conditions
(e.g., within specific pathogen free (SPF) area for breeding colony of immune deficient rats, requiring gowning
and specialized sterilization techniques); provides requested data and procedures as directed for research project
(e.g., records conception dates, monitors gestation, and x-rays 90 days from conception to establish fetal development
for research); prepares parasite slides for parasite exams; draws blood samples from animals as requested (e.g.,
prepares site by shaving and cleansing, performs venapuncture, collects blood in appropriate quantity from appropriate
site depending on species of animal); assists with surgery preparation (e.g., shaves, washes, secures and restrains
animal); euthanizes animals as instructed (e.g., performs cardiac punctures on rabbits, utilizes C02 gas chamber);
separates and houses quarantined animals.
- Animal Care. Typical tasks: performs vaccinations and inoculations; prepares special diets and liquids
according to instructions of veterinarian; clips toenails and teeth of animals; waters and feeds animals (e.g.,
rodents, rabbits, cats, dogs, sheep) following specific instructions; removes soiled bedding and debris from animal
cages or runs; takes dirty cages to washroom or washes housing area; transfers animals from soiled area to clean
area; replaces soiled bedding with clean bedding materials (e.g., shredded newspapers, hay, shavings, gravel);
cleans fight wounds and scratches and applies salve; checks for parasites and treats as appropriate; applies routine
medications as prescribed by veterinarian (e.g., injections, salves and creams); places identification tags or
notches on animals' ears.
- General Maintenance. Typical tasks: cleans animal areas and rooms (e.g., cleans dog runs, animal kennels,
cages, animal racks); shovels bedding; sweeps and mops floors; washes counters, sinks, and walls; cleans surfaces
with disinfectants; operates mechanical washing equipment (e.g., cage washing machine, power sprayer).
- Observation and Records. Typical tasks: checks animals daily for signs of abnormal behavior, illness,
or injury; reports observed findings to supervisor (e.g., dull coat, dull eyes, listlessness, weight loss); records
animal population data; records requested environmental data (e.g., room temperature, lighting); signs area work
sheet for work performed; fills out death record on dead animals and bags and removes animal as instructed.
- Miscellaneous. Typical tasks: may perform some but not all of the following tasks: demonstrates to research
staff, investigators, and/or student workers animal handling, husbandry, and equipment use; prepares animals for
shipping and transport; loads, unloads, and/or delivers ordered animals; assists in training of new employees;
assists in restraining animals for examination; helps in maintaining an open acreage, pasture, barns, (e.g., sprays
fertilizers, mows grass, maintains fences); assists in the maintenance of equipment.
RELATIONSHIPS WITH OTHERS
Employees in this class have occasional contact with research investigators, research staff, and/or veterinarians,
through written instructions or in-person contact, to receive instructions on animal care and report on animal's
condition. Employees in this class may also have occasional contact with vendors delivering animals and supplies
and with student workers to demonstrate and direct work.
Employees in this class receive general supervision from an Laboratory Animal Technician Supervisor or a research
assistant who provides work assignments, verbally and in writing. Work is reviewed by informal observation and
upon completion for conformance to agency procedures, policies, and timeliness.
Positions in this class are primarily found in higher education institutions and facilities working in animal
research. They require the willingness to maintain a proper attitude toward the purpose of animal research and
the treatment and use of animals in that environment. Some positions require the willingness to perform or assist
in animal euthanasia.
- Two years of experience in the care of experimental animals in a research setting;
- An equivalent combination
training and experience.