Keeping everyoNE Safe with the Special Animal Safety Protocol (SASP) Program


The Special Animal Safety Protocol (SASP) is a document designed to quickly give personnel working in animal facilities the information they may need quickly.

Whether the hazardous agent is a human pathogen, recombinant/synthetic nucleic acid material, or harmful chemical, a SASP for each agent administered to an experimental animal(s) will be found in a special binder located in the room --right where the animal is housed!

The SASP gives a quick look at:

  • PI and emergency contact information
  • Characteristics of the agent and symptoms of exposure
  • Minimum PPE required to handle the agent*
  • Required procedures, equipment, and disposal for working with these animals

* Best practices and DLAR husbandry SOPs may require additional PPE


Information can be found on the EH&S website at: ehs.uky.edu ! Here are the steps researchers will take:

  1. After final approval of IACUC protocol, the researcher will receive SASP(s) for any hazardous agent determined to present a risk to husbandry personnel or other staff who may be handling animals administered the agent and/or their respective cages.
  2. Before work with the agent begins, the researcher, in consultation with DLAR, submits a Hazardous Agent Service Request and attaches the SASPs to the request. The request form may be accessed at:https://www.research.uky.edu/uploads/dlar-hazardous-agent-use-request-2-pgs-pdf-0

The researcher makes a printout of the finalized form and SASP(s) for each room where animals with the administered agent(s) referenced on SASP(s) are housed. Place the copies in the service binder for the room.

The researcher places a completed orange Hazardous Agent Awareness Cage Card on each cage with animals administered agent(s) referenced on SASP(s).

Blank cards are located in rooms and in the DLAR office.


If animals and cages are to be handled by lab/PI staff only, the area the bottom of the card must be circled!

Hazardous Agent Service Request form number associated with animal(s) must be listed on the card. This is most important in order for anyone to quickly look up pertinent information to the animal(s).

When use of hazardous agent and period of potential heath hazard has ended, the researcher simply removes orange Hazardous Agent Awareness Cage Card from animal cage and removes Service Request and SASP(s) from Service Book.

Adherence to these procedures helps keep everyone informed and safe!

Friendly reminder: incident or injury reporting

The information on the orange cage cards and SASPS is also useful to inform clinical staff in diagnosis and treatment in the case of accident or injury. Remember, if any incident or injury occurs, report it to your supervisor regardless of severity!

If an exposure to a hazardous agent should occur, please keep the following in mind:

1. Stay calm. Secure any animals.

2. Doff PPE and follow first aid procedures.

3. If an animal was involved, please make note of its cage card, PI owner, and status.

4. Report your injury to your supervisor and, if needed, proceed to UHS for medical attention.*

5. If the accident results in exposure to infectious agents or recombinant materials, the supervisor should immediately report incident to the Department of Biological Safety.

*For life threatening injuries, call 911 or proceed immediately to the Emergency Department of UK Chandler Hospital.

Questions or concerns about the SASP Program may be directed to Holley Hannabach, UK Animal Research Compliance Manager at 859-257-8655, or hmtr222@uky.edu.


Created with an image by Howie R - "Tilly saying thank you https://www.instagram.com/sillytillycocker/"