Animal House Core Facility (SQU)

To provide to all researchers and educators in the SQU a quality small animal care in an atmosphere that is friendly, competent and professional. We aim at making the service provided to researchers and educators flexible and responsive to their individual needs. The Small Animal House (SAH) Core Facility is a separate building where small animals (currently Rats and Mice) are being bred and maintained for use in Research, Teaching and Education.  Small animals are used in different aspects of biomedical research that include studies on the central nervous, cardiovascular and renal systems. Rats and mice are also used for teaching practical classes at the CoMHS; and Colleges of Science, and Agricultural & Marine Sciences.

The Small Animal House is located 0.6 km from the main Administration building on the Northern side, on the road to Male Sports Complex and before reaching the Female Complex No. 4 (open hours from 8.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m).  In the event someone has to work after normal working hours or during weekends and holidays prior arrangements have to be made with the staff of the facility in consultation with the Chairman.

  • 7 Rooms to maintain and breed rats.  Presently the facility has several strains of rats, viz., WKY (T), SHR (H),  WKY (H),   S.D.,  F344,  SHR (T), and WISTAR  rats.


  • 2 Small rooms for Mice – MF1 and C57/BL6 strains.


  • 3 Small Laboratories:

    (a)     Hemodynamics Lab                      (Room #0037)

    (b)     Preparation Lab for Telemetry      (Room #0039)

    (c)     Blood Pressure Measuring Lab     (Room #0029)

    (d)     Animal Behaviour Lab                  (Room #0022)


  • < > – presently used as Research Rooms and for approved Projects. (Rooms #0009, #0010 and #0012).

    1 Room – Telemetry Research Laboratory  (Room #0011).


  • 2 Surgery Rooms:   Equipped with operating tables and  illuminators for operating tables (Room #0025).

Most of the equipments were bought from projects funded by SQU, and are available to all investigators:

1)    Equipments for studying animal behaviour


Passive Avoidance Apparatus for Rats & Mice

Model for studying learning and memory


Barnes Maze

Model for studying learning and memory


Activity Meter

To measure vertical & horizontal motor activity


Tail Flick Apparatus

To measure antinociceptive thermal action


Analgesy Meter

To measure antinociceptive mechanical action


Rota Rod 

To measure neuromuscular coordination


Hole Board

To measure exploratory behaviour


Tail Suspension Chamber

Model for depression in mice


Hot Plate

To measure antinociceptive thermal action


Grip Strength Meter & Grasping Bar/Force Transducer

To measure grip strength in mice


2)    Bone Densitometer – Model Lunar Pixi [This equipment is currently run by Dr. Haddia Bererhi.] (Room #0025)


3)    Non-Invasive Blood Pressure Measuring Unit – IITC Life Science (Room #0029)


Accessory Equipments:


-   Automatic Cage Washer – Using in washing and rinsing all animal cages

-   2 Fume Hoods (laminal flow) – used to dispense highly toxic chemicals

-   Autoclave – Model Astell (for larger items)

-   Autoclave for surgical instruments – Model SES 2000 (ESCHMANN)

-   Deep Freezer – Haier 

-   Large LG Refrigerator – used to store drugs and samples

-   LEC small Refrigerator – used to store drugs and chemicals

-   Deep Freezer – used to store dead animals (till final disposal)

-   Bottle Washer – used for washing animal bottles

-   Digital Balance

-   Triple Beam Balance

-   Heavy Duty Balance

-   Walk in Refrigerator (Animal Feed Chiller)

-   Leica Compound Microscope for Surgery

-   Olympus Compound Microscope

-   Swift Dissecting Microscope

-   Tread Mill for rats

-           Heating Plate for rats

This facility provides technical support for animal research and project work. Guided basic lectures on animal care, breeding and animal welfare are provided to students from the Animal Science and Veterinary Department of the College of Agriculture and Marine Sciences. Support and assistance is given to Medical doctors on specialized events like Laparoscopic Surgery, teaching events like Trauma and Emergency handling and Surgical procedures.

For elements of safety and efficiency, this facility is not a place for public viewing.  It is a facility housing animals for Breeding, Research work and Project work. Any program in this facility is subject to approval from the Chairman of the Animal House Committee with prior notice. Students and Academics with the approval are allowed to work here but must adhere to the standard operating procedures (SOP):

1)      Animals will not to be given to anyone without the approved Animal Request Forms.  It has to be signed by Head of your Department and by the Chairman Animal House Committee. The facility needs at least 4-5 months notice for breeding your required animals.

2)      Animal Welfare is very important. Animals are not to be taken out of the facility and returned.

3)      Undue stress to animals by wrong methods of handling during the work is not tolerated. The staff will guide approved users on the proper handling techniques.

4)      Syringe needles exposed in the working area. This is to prevent oneself from accidentally pricking you or causing injury to the next person using this area.

5)      Dispose all needles after use in the Disposing containers.

6)      Please maintain silence in the animal house.  Some animals go into stress when they hear high sounds.

7)      Make sure that you tidy up the working area.

8)      Wash your hands with soap and antiseptic after finishing.  Your personal hygiene is very important.

9)      Wear gloves and mask wherever necessary. Wearing lab coat is compulsory.

10)    Any animal requirement will be provided by the staff.  It is not allowed to walk into rooms and remove any animals or disturb the animals.

Sultan Qaboos University has an established Ethics Committee which is the decision making body on the usage of animals for any Research or Project work. All Research proposals have to first be approved by the Ethics Committee. There is a general principle that animal life will not be taken wantonly and therefore it is recommended that research is carried out by using the minimum number of animals as possible.

Mr. Sulatn Nasser Al-Maskari 


Ext : 1250/3676


Dean Office


Current location at SQU

Small Animal Hous

Request for Laboratory Animals  

Download Request Form


Date Requested: …………………                            Date Required: …………………..


Department: ……………………..                             College: …………………………..






Total Number

………/ How required

Special instruction



Same Time



By Age

By Weight
















Please make sure that all columns are filled.


Location at which animals will be used: ………………………………………..



Research *

Clinical/ Diagnostic**

Teaching ***









*       Approved MRC research protocol name, number and date of approval University Ethical Committee for Animal Management (UECAM)

**     Attach brief description of the procedures to be used and their purpose.

***  Attach a brief summary of the experiment.


College Approval: HoD …..……………………..             Signature: …………….…


Small Animal House Committee Approval: …………………………


As investigator requesting the above animals, I affirm that the animals will be used solely for the investigations as described by me in the attached protocols.  I undertake complete responsibility for the husbandry of animals released to me for approved experimental work, either teaching or research.


Requested by: ………………………                       Signature: …………………..