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. 

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...

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...

The complexity experienced in early life can affect trait development of individuals, including sociability and fearfulness. The modern dairy calf’s rearing environment often lacks environmental and social complexity. This study examined the effects of early-life...

Pair housing of pre-weaning dairy calves has previously demonstrated positive impacts on their growth, health and behaviour, but longer-term effects on production are still relatively unknown. This study followed a cohort of 431 Holstein heifers...

The public has expressed growing concern for the well-being of fishes, including popular pet species such as the Siamese fighting fish (Betta splendens). In captivity, male Bettas behave aggressively, often causing injuries and death if...

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...

Leptin is a hormone that plays a key role in controlling food intake and energy homeostasis. Skeletal muscle is an important target for leptin and recent studies have shown that leptin deficiency may lead to...

This study aimed to determine the effects of early-life physical and social enrichment on the ability of dairy heifers to integrate into a herd of mature cows. Fifty heifer calves were reared from the ages...

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...

Social pair housing of calves has previously demonstrated positive impacts for calves, so this study aimed to compare the health and behaviour of calves kept in individual compared to pair housing on a single commercial...

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...

The goal of this randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled study was to evaluate the effect of environmental enrichment (EE) on post-operative pain and anxiety in dogs following hemilaminectomy for acute intervertebral disc extrusion (IVDE).MethodsTwenty healthy client-owned dogs...

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...

Domestic herbivores show a strong motivation to form associations with conspecifics and the social dynamics of any group is dependant on the individuals within the group. Thus, common farm management practices such mixing may cause...

In an attempt to develop more effective surgical implantation methods for fish, surgical incisions typical of those made for implanting micro-acoustic transmitters into the peritoneal cavity were evaluated on a weekly basis for healing progression...

Heart disease is a major contributor to mortality and disability on a global scale. Hence, there is a need for research to improve non-invasive diagnostic techniques. Diseases in dogs with characteristics very similar to those...

To ensure the optimal living conditions of farm animals, it is essential to understand how their senses work and the way in which they perceive their environment. Most animals have a different hearing range compared...

Numerous cardiac output (CO) technologies were developed to replace the ‘gold standard’ pulmonary artery thermodilution due to its invasiveness and the risks associated with it. Minimally invasive lithium dilution (LiD) shows excellent agreement with thermodilution...

While the insertion of the arthroscope into the elbow joint is relatively easy based on anatomical landmarks, obtaining a correctly located instrument portal is often difficult. Therefore, the goal of the study was to create...

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...

OBJECTIVE To compare the effect of a circulating warm water blanket (WWB) in combination with a heated humidified breathing circuit (HHBC) heated to 45 °C on rectal temperature (RT) in dogs undergoing general anesthesia for...

Social buffering occurs when the presence of a partner mitigates the stress response of an individual. In two experiments, we assessed the effects of social buffering in dairy calves, with and without a known conspecific...

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...