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. 

Steroid-induced osteonecrosis of the femoral head (SONFH) is a condition documented in humans and animals exposed to chronic steroid administration. The rabbit has become a preferred animal model for investigating the pathogenesis and treatment of...

It has become mandatory for the application for allowance of animal experimentation to rate the severity of the experimental procedures. In order to minimize suffering related to animal experimentation it is therefore crucial to develop...

Elective health checks form an important part of the preventative healthcare of many zoo-housed animals. These procedures are not without risk or financial expenditure, meaning careful cost–benefit analysis is required when determining the frequency and...

Evidence-based severity assessment in laboratory animals is, apart from the ethical responsibility, imperative to generate reproducible, standardized and valid data. However, the path towards a valid study design determining the degree of pain, distress and...

The 3Rs, Replacement, Reduction and Refinement, is a framework to ensure the ethical and justified use of animals in research. The implementation of refinements is required to alleviate and minimise the pain and suffering of...

Rabbits are the third species in terms of number of animals reared for meat production in the world. However, in comparison to other species, very few studies have focused on their welfare. The aim of...

The performance of natural behavior is commonly used as a criterion in the determination of animal welfare. This is still true, despite many authors having demonstrated that it is not a necessary component of welfare...

Effective pain relief in animals relies on the ability to discern pain and assess its severity. However, few objective measures exist to assess the presence and severity of pain in axolotls, and few resources are...

Intubation in rabbits can be difficult due to their unique anatomical features. Large incisors, long narrow oral cavities, thick tongues, and limited mobility of the temporomandibular joint make laryngeal visualization difficult. It is the hope...

The recognition of animal suffering is influenced by cultural and societal prejudices and the cuteness of an animal leads to bias in the way it is treated. It is important to consider the animal’s behaviour...

Modern day zoos and aquariums continuously assess the welfare of their animals and use evidence to make informed management decisions. Historically, many of the indicators of animal welfare used to assess the collection are negative...

Infra-red thermography (IRT) is a non-invasive tool for measuring eye temperature as an indicator of stress and welfare in animals. Previous studies state that images are taken from 90° but do not specify a reference...

Social interactions are central to the health and psychological well-being of domestic animals. Until now, research has overwhelmingly focused on negative social behaviours such as aggression or the lack of social interactions such as social...

Rabbits provide a unique challenge for routine endotracheal intubation in clinical practice because of various distinctive anatomic and physiologic features. Many previously proposed methods for endotracheal intubation in rabbits are limited by several factors, including...

Objective methods for assessing the cumulative lifetime experience of non-human animals would be valuable. We develop the hypothesis that biological age is a common currency that integrates the overall quality of an animal's lifetime experience...

Effective management of pain is critical to the improvement of animal welfare. For this to happen, pain must be recognised and assessed in a variety of contexts. Pain is a complex phenomenon, making reliable, valid...

This is the Second Edition of a well-received book that reflects a fresh, integrated coverage of the concepts and scientific measurement of stress and welfare of animals including humans. This book explains the basic biological...

Boredom, while often casually attributed to non-human animals by both laypeople and scientists, has received little empirical study in this context. It is sometimes dismissed by others as anthropomorphic or a trivial concern in comparison...

Within animal research and testing, the need for an effective Culture of Care is widely recognized and described in terms of an establishment-wide commitment to improving the implementation of the 3Rs, animal welfare, scientific quality...

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...

It is claimed that positive animal welfare (PAW) developed over the last decade in reaction to animal welfare focusing too much on avoiding negatives. However, it remains unclear what PAW adds to the animal welfare...

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...

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...

We report a systematic review and meta-analysis of research using animal models of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN). We systematically searched 5 online databases in September 2012 and updated the search in November 2015 using machine...

The actions of human caretakers strongly influence animals living under human care. Here, we consider how intentional and unintentional signals provided by caretakers can inform our assessment of animals' well-being as well as help to...

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