Refinement Database

Database on Refinement of Housing, Husbandry, Care, and Use of Animals in Research

This database, created in 2000, is updated every four months with newly published scientific articles, books, and other publications related to improving or safeguarding the welfare of animals used in research.

Tips for using the database:

  • This landing page displays all of the publications in the database.
  • Use the drop-down menus to filter these publications by Animal Type, Setting, and/or Topic.
  • Clicking on a parent category (e.g., Rodent) will include publications relating to all the items in that category (e.g., Chinchilla, Gerbil, Guinea Pig, etc.).
  • You may also add a keyword to further narrow your search.
  • Please note that at this time, only publications dated 2010 or later (with some exceptions) can be filtered by Animal Type and Topic, and only publications dated 2020 or later (with some exceptions) can be filtered by Setting. Most publications older than 2010 can only be searched by keyword. 

The latest edition of the seminal reference on the care and management of laboratory and research animals. The newly revised ninth edition of The UFAW Handbook on the Care and Management of Laboratory and Other...

Laboratory fish play an important role in modern scientific research. More and more researchers have begun to pay attention to the other living environment except the physical and chemical factors of the water body, because...

Physical complexity adds physical enrichment to rearing conditions. This enrichment promotes fish welfare and reduces detrimental characteristics that fish develop in captivity. Senegalese sole (Solea senegalensis) is an important species for European aquaculture, where it...

Shelters are stressful environments for domestic dogs (Canis familiaris). Evaluating dogs’ welfare is crucial to improve their life condition and to promote a better management of shelters. We aimed at verifying which variables improved welfare...

In intense breeding programs, rabbits are exposed to numerous stress factors which could affect their welfare and health. It has been suggested that group housing is more comfortable for does and similar to the living...

The objective of the study was to investigate the effects of housing (deep litter + concrete floor vs. deep litter + ground soil with the possibility to dig burrows), and genotype (Mecklenburg or Hyplus) on...

Recent advances in emotions and cognitive science make it imperative to assess the emotional stress in goats at the time of slaughter. The present study was envisaged to study the electroencephalogram and physiological responses as...

Animal stress is influenced by environmental factors, yet only a few studies have evaluated the effects of environmental stress on captive dogs. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of environmental and social enrichment on...

Para-aminopropiophenone (PAPP) is a potent methaemoglobin (MetHb) forming agent used for the lethal control of exotic carnivores and mustelids. To assess the sensitivity of Australian wildlife to PAPP we developed an in vivo assay that...

Early offspring separation from mothers causes social deprivation. Mouthbrooding, when eggs and fry are incubated in the buccal cavity of the parent, is one of the reproductive strategies in fish. The mother is the incubating...

As fish welfare becomes a growing concern, it is important to ensure humane treatment during slaughter. This study aimed to assess the onset of unconsciousness in Atlantic halibut immersed in CO2-saturated seawater through electroencephalography (EEG)...

Zebrafish (Danio rerio) are a popular model organism in behavioral pharmacology research due to many genetic and neurological similarities with humans. As a social species, the presence (or absence) of conspecifics during housing and testing...

Environmental DNA (eDNA) techniques have emerged as a cost-effective and non-invasive strategy for monitoring the distribution of endangered aquatic species. Despite their numerous advantages, operational uncertainty at each step of the process represents a significant...

Information on slaughter procedures for farmed fish in aquaculture is limited, both in Europe and in Italy, due to a general lack of field data. The aim of this study was to gather information on...

Mixed-species shoals of fishes were reported from various environments such as coral reefs and temperate lakes. The driving mechanism of forming mixed-species shoal can be either haphazard or a preferential choice by an individual. Here...

It is crucial to understand the effect of living in a shelter on dog’s well-being. We hypothesized that mental states may indicate the presence of environmental stressors. The objective of this study was to determine...

Elasmobranchs are threatened and eDNA metabarcoding is a powerful tool that can help efforts to better understand and conserve them. Nevertheless, the inter-calibration between optimal methodological practices and its implementation in resource-limited situations is still...

The “isolation syndrome” is a term used to describe the stress responses observed in highly social species when they lack social interactions. This syndrome affects various aspects of an individual’s welfare, including hormonal, behavioral, and...

Social housing of laboratory rabbits is encouraged and thought to improve animal welfare due to the social nature of this species. However, there is limited published information comparing the physiologic and cardiovascular (CV) effects of...

Housing breeding female rabbits in multi-litter instead of single-litter cages allows for more natural behaviour and social contact with conspecifics. Hierarchy fights among does, however, inhibit uptake on farms. Past focus on high reproductive performances...

Euthanasia is frequently performed in amphibians, but techniques are currently limited in number and variable in effectiveness. The current study examined the use of potassium chloride (KCl) for euthanasia of anesthetized African clawed frogs (Xenopus...

Here, we evaluated if visual barriers could reduce intraspecific agonism in an all-male group of Nile crocodiles (Crocodylus niloticus) living in a zoo. Crocodiles were monitored for nearly 100 h, and four “hotspots” of aggression...

Social animals commonly establish dominance relationships by means of aggressive interaction, leading to hierarchical stability and priority of access to limited resources by high-ranked individuals. In poikilothermic animals, temperature is a major abiotic factor influencing...

OBJECTIVE: Doses of buffered tricaine methanesulfonate (MS-222) up to 1000 mg/L for 15 minutes are reported inefficient to produce euthanasia in goldfish. The goal of this study was to determine if goldfish can be euthanized...