Animal Welfare Committee


The Animal Welfare Committee has the authority, on behalf of the University to:

  1. Ensure that any objectionable procedures be stopped if, in consultation with the veterinarian, the Animal Welfare Committee considers that unnecessary pain and distress is being experienced by the animal.
  2. Ensure that any use of animals be stopped which, by deviating from the approved protocol, causes the animals to experience undue pain and distress.
  3. Ensure that an animal be humanely killed if, in consultation with the veterinarian, the Animal Welfare Committee feels that pain or distress caused to the animal cannot be alleviated.

Animal Welfare Committee Terms of Reference



The University Animal Welfare Committee (AWC) includes representation from the following areas:

Community members representing the community interests and concerns

1 Faculty member from a department other than those using animals

1 Veterinarian, experienced in the use of animals for research (ex officio)
Dr. Isabelle Gauthier, University Veterinarian/Director of Animal Care Services

3 Faculty members experienced in research animal care and use, from departments conducting research with animals; faculty members should be from Neuroscience, Biological Sciences, and Psychology
Dr. Steve Wiseman, Co-Chair
Dr. Jean-Baptiste Leca, Co-Chair

A student representative

A representative from Campus Safety

A technical staff representative from each of the animal research facilities

Research Services (ex officio)
Danika Dorchak, AWC Coordinator


Other individuals may be asked to review the protocols as the need arises.

Quorum = 50%+1 (must include the Chair, Veterinarian, a Community Representative and the AWC Coordinator)


AWC Chair

A Chair is elected annually. The Chair should not be:

  • an ex officio member
  • be directly involved in the management of the institutional animal facilities
  • be a clinical veterinarian for the institution
  • be an animal health or veterinary personnel member charged with ensuring compliance with CCAC guidelines
  • be involved in the preparation of a significant number of the protocols to be reviewed by the Committee, in order to avoid potential conflicts of interest.

Committee members are appointed by the Vice-President (Research) for two-year periods, with terms staggered to provide continuity. Normally, terms may be renewed once. The Committee reports through the Vice President, Research to the President.



Animal Welfare Approval Form

Canadian Council on Animal Care