Lab Animal Technician II

  • Salk Institute for Biological Studies
  • La Jolla, CA 920371002, USA
  • May 16, 2022
Full time Veterinary Medicine & Sciences

Job Description


The position provides skilled animal care to the colony management area of the Animal Resources Department in support of research activities. The incumbent is expected to assist researchers with rodent breeding, checking plugs and determining pregnancy, separating mice, consolidating and culling colonies, performing weaning and record keeping. This position also includes performing animal identification and collecting biological specimens for genotyping.


Colony Management (55%)

  • Assists researchers in the areas of colony management including setting up breeding pairs, checking plugs and determining pregnancy, separating mice, consolidating and culling colonies and performing weaning.
  • Monitors and maintains rodent colonies.
  • Performs proper animal identification and collects biological specimen for genotyping.
  • Participates in the trouble shooting and clinical management of colony performance and reproductive pathologies.
  • Performs standard techniques in reproductive physiology in support of research colonies including timed mating, fostering, C-section, ovarian transplantation and others.
  • Assists with rodent re-derivation program.
  • Maintains proper breeding and colony documentation in support of colony management activity.

Administrative Duties & Projects (15%)

  • Receives and verifies animal deliveries for colony management.
  • Assists with ordering colony management supplies.
  • Assists with SOP preparation for procedures and training.
  • Inputs data into the Colony Management database and communicates all pertinent information to the investigators on their breeding colonies.
  • Works on special projects as assigned.

Training (5%)

  • Assists in training and guidance for investigators in the areas of colony management, animal identification and tissue collection for genotyping.

Animal Health Care (15%)

  • Observes animal health.
  • Administers medications as directed.
  • Performs in-house diagnostic tests. Collects and prepares samples for outside diagnostic testing.
  • Assists the clinical veterinarian with necropsies, non-research surgeries and follow-up veterinary care.
  • Maintains cross-training in husbandry activities with rodents.
  • Checks animals for signs of illness or trauma, feeds, waters, changes cages, grooms and conducts breeding
  • Monitors proper environmental parameters, sanitation and general housekeeping of the facility.
  • Maintains proper animal identification and precise records for required documentation.

Room Maintenance (5%)

  • Maintains cabinets stocked with appropriate colony management supplies.
  • Maintains veterinary equipment and medical instruments.
  • Maintains organization and cleanliness of animal procedure rooms.

Other Duties as Assigned (5%)



  • With a high school diploma, minimum 2 years of experience in a laboratory animal facility or research facility with rodents.


  • Prior tissue sampling experience.
  • Prior colony management experience.



  • High school diploma or equivalent, or Associate's degree in a related field with requisite experience for respective education level.
  • AALAS certification as a Lab Animal Technician (LAT).


  • Associate's or Bachelor's degree in a related field.



  • Knowledge of basic veterinary equipment and instruments.
  • Hands on experience with animal husbandry, breeding, handling and restraint, blood/tissue sampling, injections, administering medications, anesthesia, surgical monitoring and euthanasia.
  • Strong record keeping and computer skills.
  • Excellent verbal, written, and interpersonal communication skills. Ability to work with a variety of people and personalities.
  • Knowledge of proper handling and disposal of sharps, biohazardous waste and other hazardous materials.
  • Knowledge of aseptic surgical technique, sterilization, disinfection and sanitization principles and applications.
  • Computer literate and familiarity with common databases; Filemaker Pro preferable.


  • Must be able to work a flexible schedule that may include weekends and holidays.
  • Must be able to work overtime based on workload and deadlines.
  • Must be able to work assigned standard schedule: Monday - Friday, Sunday - Thursday, Tuesday - Saturday from 6:00 a.m.- 2:30 p.m./6:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m./7:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m./ 8:00 a.m.- 4:30 p.m.
  • Management reserves the right to change or modify assigned schedules based on operational needs.
  • Post offer physical required which may include respirator fit test.
  • Possible rotating schedule.
  • Must be willing to sign a confidentiality agreement. 


As a safeguard for employees and animals, all ARD employees may be subject to vaccines/tests/physical exams prior to working with specific animals or animal populations as required by research needs including but not limited to:

  • TB Testing/Clearance (once a year)
  • Tetanus/ Diphtheria (vaccination < 10 years proof of immunization and/or vaccination)
  • Measles (proof of immunization and/or vaccination)
  • Periodic physical exams (may include respirator fit test)
  • Other vaccines/tests as required by Occupational Health & Safety standards


This position requires constant seeing, adjusting focus, hearing, lifting 0-20lbs, communicating, and working inside. 


Application Details

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 Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities


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