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Animal Transportation


DVR provides a laboratory animal delivery service to transport research animals between facilities on the NIH Bethesda campus, the NIH Animal Center, and other NIH facilities in the Washington metropolitan area. On special request, transportation can be arranged to and from local airports and other government-affiliated animal facilities. Transportation services are provided using specifically designed, environmentally controlled vehicles to ensure the well-being and safe transport of animals. DVR has the capabilities to transport a wide range of species, including: non-human primates, ungulates, canines, felines, rodents, rabbits, and on occasion, biological samples.

All DVR Transportation Staff undergo comprehensive training and hold current Commercial Driver’s Licenses (CDL’s). This comprehensive training consists of:fire safety, personal protective equipment (PPE), handling and restraint of animals, zoonotic diseases, bloodborne pathogen standards, vehicle sanitation procedures and the obtaining of medical care. DVR Transportation Staff are tested annually for animal health considerations and adhere to all NIH outlined Occupational Health considerations for working with research animals.

Transportation Policies

  • NEW: It is DVR policy that animals are mentally alert and fully mobile during transportation.  Sedated or anesthetized animals require continuous monitoring during transportation in DVR vehicles.
  • Requests for transportation should be placed at least 2 working days in advance.  Place an Animal Transportation Request.

Hours of Operation

Standard hours are from 7:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.

Service may be arranged outside of these hours upon request at least 3 working days in advance.  Services outside of normal working hours will be charged directly to the IC.

Bethesda Campus – NIH Animal Center Schedule

DVR regularly transports specific classes of animals on specific days of the week. This helps prevent cross-contamination between species and minimizes stress on the animals due to unfamiliar noises, predator/prey responses, etc. The schedule is as follows:

  • Monday: Non-Human Primates
  • Tuesday: Ungulates
  • Wednesday: Any species
  • Thursday: Non-Human Primates
  • Friday: Any species

Transportation Requests 

To submit an Animal Transportation request, please use the online DVR Animal Transportation Request. Requests for transportation should be placed at least 2 working days in advance. Online instructions for the request form are available.

Rodent and Rabbit Shipping Crates

Upon request, DVR Animal Transportation can provide shipping crates for rodents and rabbits. These crates are suitable for local shipping and the costs of the crates will be billed to the requester's CAN.

Download the Shipping Crate Request Form PDF document


 Sheep being transported in crate  Sheep in a cage image   

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Customer Service

  • Office: (301) 496-8184
  • Kris Eckard: (301) 402-3961
  • Peggy Novicky: (301) 435-3010
Vet Animals