Auburn, Ala. -- Recently, Auburn's College of Veterinary Medicine underwent a long evaluation to maintain their status as an accredited veterinary college by the Association for the Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care, International, or AAALAC. The college has maintained this distinction since 2003.

“We undergo this evaluation every three years,” Dr. Patricia Rynders, director of the Division of Laboratory Animal Health, and university veterinarian said. “But it takes a true team effort working daily to maintain the environment and the care that is expected and required. The college is fortunate to have such dedicated individuals.”

Auburn has always been known to provide the best possible care for animals seeking their veterinary services. The presence of animals plays a vital role in the educating of veterinary students and the bettering of the care of animals at Auburn.

“It is like having the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval for your animal program,” said Rynders. “AAALAC is an international program and accreditation tells the world that your program has met or exceeded all regulatory requirements and that it follows only the highest standards of care.”

According to Rynders, gaining this accreditation and keeping it is a long process of consistent improvements. 

This evaluation is given by a diverse team of professionals whose careers are focused on animal welfare and care. The team visited in February, after the institution performed a period of self-evaluation. The college has just recently gotten the news of its being re-accredited.

“It’s a three-year cycle, but we really never stop seeking ways to improve our animal care program and striving for excellence above and beyond,” Rynders said. “It’s a hard process and it can be very stressful, but it is something that we should do and that we are very proud of.”