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. 

We would like to rebut the argument made by Saraiva et al. (1) in their paper “Finding the “golden stocking density”: a balance between fish welfare and farmers' perspectives,” that stocking densities should not be...

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...

When necessary, sea turtles are held captive for veterinarian care and research purposes. Protocols and basic guidelines have been described for husbandry of sea turtles with veterinarian needs but not considering physiological indicators of animal...

(1) Background: the popularity of rabbits has increased during the last decade and become the third most common companion animal in the EU. Rabbits’ participation in Animal-Assisted Interventions (AAIs) is growing. It is highly important...

A non-invasive method of drug delivery, intranasal atomization, has shown positive results in human medicine and in some animal species. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of intranasal atomization, compared to...

Transport conditions have the potential to alter the physiological responses of animals to the psychological or physical stress of transport. Transportation may introduce multiple physical and psychological stressors to unweaned calves and adult cattle, including...

It is estimated that 2 million domestic animals travel on commercial flights every year in the US alone and that dogs make up 58% of pets travelling worldwide. There has been little research on the...

As a global society, we have a duty to provide suitable care and conditions for farmed livestock to protect animal welfare and ensure the sustainability of our food supply. The suitability and biological impacts of...

The effects of stocking density on fish welfare are complex and involve many interacting parameters. This complex relationship between fish welfare, stocking density and influencing factors make it challenging to define a specific optimal (“golden”)...

Environmental condition, such as environmental complexity or stocking density, can directly or indirectly influence animal emotion and ultimately, affective state. Affective states of animals can be assessed through judgement bias tests, evaluating responses to ambiguous...

In conclusion, the investigations carried out up to now demonstrate that during the early stages fish show high sensitivity to many types of stressors involving an array of responses to overcome alterations that could affect...

Understanding the behavioral welfare of dogs in commercial breeding kennels (CBKs) is important for improving breeders’ management practices as well as dog welfare. In the current study, breeding dogs from CBKs were exposed to novel...

Objective, reliable behavioral tests are needed to refine on-site welfare assessments of dogs housed at commercial breeding (CB) kennels and provide a basis to inform predictions of their behavior when retired from such kennels. This...

Cattle are subjected to routine procedures that require restraint and close contact to humans, which are both potentially aversive to the animal. Positive reinforcement training techniques may affect how animals perceive and respond to these...

The overpopulation of shelters and the increase of homeless dogs have become serious problems in many countries. One contributor to the number of both sheltered and homeless dogs is the abandonment and relinquishment of pet...

Housing systems and environmental features can influence beef cattle welfare. To date, little information has been synthesized on this topic. The aim of this scoping review was to examine the relationship between housing and welfare...

In dogs, the social and spatial restriction associated with living in a kennel environment could lead to chronic stress and the development of abnormal behaviors (“kennel-dog syndrome”). However, little is known about how kenneled dogs...

This is the 5th volume of selected discussions that took place on the electronic Laboratory Animal Refinement & Enrichment Forum between February 2016 and December 2019. The forum was created in October 2002; it allows...

Unwanted dogs are an international problem, and rehoming organisations are tasked with finding many of them appropriate homes. Whilst the processes involved in assessing dogs' suitability for rehoming have received considerable academic attention, the policies...

This study aimed at assessing whether a reduction in stocking density (SKD) would mitigate lameness and positively affect the performance and health of Charolais bulls in an Italian commercial farm. Bulls were distributed in groups...

Limited space in dairy cattle farming is associated with frequent encounters between cows, often resulting in agonistic interactions and injuries, especially in horned cows. Previous studies with dairy cows investigated space allowances in the waiting...

Fish batches are often transported from aquacultures to laboratory facilities, and this fact triggers a pre-stressed condition that can cause alterations in both physiological and behavioural status of animals. The acclimation before fish trials is...

Disposal of dogs retired from commercial breeding facilities presents a scientific and ethical problem. This pilot study aimed to develop criteria for identifying commercial breeding (CB) dogs likely to be at risk for problems during...

The effects of structural enrichment in the hatchery rearing environment of brown trout Salmo trutta was linked to post-release performance. Enrichment resulted in reduced swimming activity scored in an open field test and reduced movement...

This article describes the rehoming of 10 laboratory female rabbits now living as a group in a private shelter.