Refinement Database

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

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

Links to the full text for publications that appear in open access journals or are published on the AWI website are provided under the abstract.

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 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. Most publications older than 2010 can only be searched by keyword. 

During social interactions, acoustic parameters of tetrapods’ vocalisations reflect the emotional state of the caller. Higher levels of spectral noise and the occurrence of irregularities (non-linear phenomena NLP) might be negative arousal indicators in alarm...

Dogs and cats have been extensively studied of late in relation to their paw preferences, with both species showing preferential motor bias at the level of the individual. Over the years, a wide range of...

Dogs experience both acute and chronic stress when living in animal shelters. Current best practices recommend a variety of techniques for reducing stress such as enhanced human interactions including play or training, novel feeding strategies...

As pets are considered members of the family, their health has received widespread attention. Since pets cannot talk and complain when they feel uncomfortable, monitoring vital signs becomes very helpful in disease detection, as well...

We argue that there is currently an under-reporting of the ways in which pain can be associated with problem behavior, which is seriously limiting the recognition of this welfare problem. A review of the caseloads...

Ensuring that laboratory rodent pain is well managed underpins the ethical acceptability of working with these animals in research. Appropriate treatment of pain in laboratory rodents requires accurate assessments of the presence or absence of...

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...

Nociceptive threshold (NT) testing is widely used for the study of pain and its alleviation. The end point is a normal behavioural response, which may be affected by restraint or unfamiliar surroundings, leading to erroneous...

Hundreds of thousands of dogs are housed in kennels worldwide, yet there are no standard protocols for assessing the welfare of dogs in these environments. Animal science is focusing increasingly on the importance of animal-based...

Activity budget comparisons between groups or individuals in the wild and those in captivity are commonly used to determine the range of wild-type behaviors that nonhuman animals in captivity perform. These comparisons are conducted with...

Dogs exposed to aversive events can become inactive and unresponsive and are commonly referred to as being "depressed", but this association remains to be tested. We investigated whether shelter dogs spending greater time inactive "awake...

Accurate assessments of behavior and welfare are needed to evaluate the state of domestic dogs maintained in commercial breeding (CB) and other types of kennels. Field assessments of dogs’ states of being must be valid...

The genetic and biological similarity between non-human primates and humans has ensured the continued use of primates in biomedical research where other species cannot be used. Health-monitoring programmes for non-human primates provide an approach to...

The shelter environment may have a severe impact on the dogs’ quality of life, and there is thus a need to develop valid tools to assess their welfare. These tools should be sensitive not only...

Not all animals behave identically when faced with the same situation. These individual differences in the expression of their behavior could be due to many factors, including medical conditions. These medical problems can change behavior...

This second edition is fully revised, expanded, and comprehensively updated with the most current knowledge about the full array of mental health issues seen in animals. Written by key opinion leaders, internationally-recognized experts and specialists...

Facial thermography has enabled researchers to noninvasively and continuously measure the changes of a range of emotional states in humans. The present work used this novel technology to study the effect of positive and negative...

Adherence to basic animal welfare standards involves effective monitoring and control of pain, especially in a veterinary setting. Assessment relies on behavioral and physiological indicators. However, individual differences in physiology mediate consistent individual differences in...

For humans and for non-human primates heart rate is a reliable indicator of an individual’s current physiological state, with applications ranging from health checks to experimental studies of cognitive and emotional state. In humans, changes...

The contemporary approach to pain measurement in people and animals seeks to measure the affective (emotional) component of the pain experience using structured questionnaires with formal scoring methodology. Chronic pain has wide-ranging impacts which affects...

Play is an enigmatic behaviour, the function of which is still debated, despite more than a century of research. We discuss the evolutionary function of play behaviour, focusing on the domestic dog (Canis familiaris), a...

Previous research on humans and animals suggests that the analysis of sleep patterns may reliably inform us about welfare status, but little research of this kind has been carried out for non-human animals in an...

The use of enzyme immunoassays (EIA) for the non-invasive measurement of glucocorticoids provides a valuable tool for monitoring health and welfare in sensitive species. We validated methods for measuring fecal glucocorticoid metabolites (FGM) using the...

A group of 39 captive common squirrel monkeys (Saimiri sciureus) had their body temperature measurements compared by rectal thermometry and facial infrared thermal imaging (Flir i3, Flir Systems Inc). Squirrel monkeys were caught up and...

Specific positioning for different imaging modalities is essential in our small animal imaging core. While we have different animal holders designed to position the animal inside the MRI, additional securing of the animal to the...

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