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. 

Inequity aversion (IA), the affective, cognitive, and behavioral response to inequitable outcomes, allows individuals to avoid exploitation and therefore stabilizes cooperation. The presence of IA varies across animal species, which has stimulated research to investigate...

Flow is an altered state of feeling ‘in the zone’ when fully absorbed in a challenge and is associated with positive affective state (feelings). Despite almost five decades of research, Flow has not yet been...

Millions of amphibians are traded annually around the world for the exotic pet industry. Their experience during both trade, and in captivity as pets, leads to numerous animal welfare issues. The poor welfare of many...

Self-directed behaviours (SDBs) are widely used as markers of emotional arousal in primates, and are commonly linked to negative arousal, or are used as indicators of stress or poor welfare. However, recent studies suggest that...

Long-term, multi-institutional assessments have become a reliable tool for evaluating patterns of wounding in zoo-living primates, with results informing on best practices for species-specific care protocols and population management strategies. For western lowland gorillas (Gorilla...

Whether animals have emotions was historically a long-lasting question but, today, nobody disputes that they do. However, how to assess them and how to guarantee animals their welfare have become important research topics in the...

Comparative thanatology encompasses the study of death-related responses in non-human animals and aspires to elucidate the evolutionary origins of human behavior in the context of death. Many reports have revealed that humans are not the...

Research in ecology and wildlife biology remains crucial for increasing our knowledge and improving species management and conservation in the midst of the current biodiversity crisis. However, obtaining information on population status often involves invasive...

Interactions between zoo professionals and animals occur regularly and are believed to be enriching for animals. Little empirical information exists on how animals perceive these interactions, and particularly how the interactions affect the emotional states...

The Association of Primate Veterinarians (APV) recognizes that several forms of restraint, including physical and chemical, are necessary for the safe handling of nonhuman primates (NHPs). The following guidelines aim to provide information to researchers...

In fiscal year 2016, agricultural animals such as swine, sheep, goats, and cattle represented 10% of the 820 812 animals used in USDA-regulated research. In addition to traditional agricultural animals, research studies using captive wildlife...

In the zoo environment, anthropogenic noise is common as sound levels fluctuate due to visitors, construction, habitat design, and special events. In this study, changes in the mood of three species of zoo-housed primates in...

Specifically designed restraint chairs are the preferred method of restraint for research studies that require NHP to sit in place for sustained periods of time. In light of increasing emphasis on refinement of restraint to...

The detection and assessment of pain in animals is crucial to improving their welfare in a variety of contexts in which humans are ethically or legally bound to do so. Thus clear standards to judge...

This is the third volume of discussions that took place on the Laboratory Animal Refinement & Enrichment Forum (LAREF). This forum is dedicated to the exchange of personal experiences of refining the conditions under which...

The discussion was started by the following questions: "Is the squeeze-back mechanism more or less stressful than the pole and collar system for removing a macaque from his cage for an IM (intramuscular) injection?" and...

Twenty-six reports provide detailed information of how primates can be trained to voluntarily cooperate - rather than resist - during blood collection, injection, topical drug application, blood pressure measurement, urine collection, and capture.

Published information provides scientific evidence that traditional, involuntary restraint techniques of research non-human primates are intrinsically a source of distress resulting from fear. It has been documented that common methods of enforced restraint result in...

With some professional expertise and goodwill, there should be no real need to resort to forceful restraint when doing research with nonhuman primates.