person handling mouse in the vivarium

Visitor Policy


The request to allow a visitor to enter the vivarium is common on several occasions e.g. a faculty candidate, collaborative research project with an external scientist, etc. People and inanimate objects (i.e. clothing & footwear) can inadvertently facilitate the transmission of an infectious agent from an infected animal at another location into the MSU vivarium if no precautions are undertaken or the risks are not known. Unsupervised visitor entry to the vivarium can be of a significant biosecurity risk of the animal’s health status and a negative impact on the on-going research projects. Additionally, it can also increase the risk for accident/injury of the visitor, and consequently, the liability of the university. This policy intends to regulate the visitor’s entry process and reduce or eliminate the risk of personnel injury, the incursions and disruptions of research activities.


  1. LAR: Laboratory Animal Resources
  2. IACUC: Institution Animal Care and Use Committee
  3. PI: Principal Investigator
  4. MSU: Montclair State University
  5. Visitor: Any person that does not have an IACUC or facility staff –approved access to the vivarium
  6. PPE: Personal Protective Equipment


The LAR staff and the research staff are responsible for abiding and adhering to the process and the requirements stated in this policy.


This policy applies to all visitors of MSU Vivarium.


  1. Visitor access request form, along with the completed animal allergy health screening questionnaire, will be submitted to the vivarium director at least 72 business hours before the desired visiting date. The approval will be provided in writing.
  2. The granted visitor access will be valid for 2 business weeks and only for one visit. Multiple Vivarium entries during the same visit day will be allowed.
  3. All visitors that are actively working in or visiting another vivarium must allow a minimum of 24 hours before entering MSU vivarium.
  4. All visitors and their sponsoring MSU employee should coordinate and make initial contact with the LAR Vivarium Director upon arrival, and before entry into the vivarium on the day of the visit.
  5. All visitors must be escorted all the time during their vivarium visit by the requesting PI or LAR personnel.
  6. All visitors must follow the PPE procedures to enter MSU vivarium and have the PPE donned all the time during their vivarium visit.
  7. All visitors must be informed and understand the risks associated with the vivarium visit including but not limited to allergic responses, chemical exposure and injury from equipment.
  8. All visitors are not permitted to handle or use animals, nor to take pictures or use any audio or video recording devices within the vivarium.
  9. Children will not be approved as visitors except as a part of an educational tour, and adequate adult supervision must be present.
  10. Failure to follow this policy will result in the visitor being immediately escorted out of the vivarium.