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. 
In a 2018 AALAS webinar on Sheep and Goat Analgesia, Dr. Susie Vogel, a small ruminant expert, introduced the concept of getting sheep and goats to willingly take medication by putting it in a tasty...
The assessment and understanding of Absorption, Distribution, Metabolism and Elimination (ADME) for new pharmaceuticals is required in regulatory submissions. Typically, ADME studies are conducted using metabolism cages designed for the single housing of animals to...
Background: Farm animals (FAs) are frequently used in biomedical research. Recommendations for the purchase, housing and health monitoring of these animals (sheep, goats, cattle and pigs) are still missing, and many institutes have developed their...
Sheep lameness is a major concern among farmers and policymakers with significant impacts on animal welfare standards as well as financial and production performance. The present study attempts to identify the relative importance of environmental...
While non-human primate studies have long been conducted in laboratories, and more recently at zoological parks, sanctuaries are increasingly considered a viable setting for research. Accredited sanctuaries in non-range countries house thousands of primates formerly...
Threshold temperatures for cold stress in sheep are not well understood, the available literature is somewhat dated and reports relate to winter temperatures that are relatively benign. Sheep’s preferences for outdoor versus indoor environments, when...
The past few decades have seen a burgeoning of scientific studies on great apes’ use of nests for sleeping in the wild, as well as their nesting behavior and sleep in captivity. We review recent...
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...
Xenopus tropicalis is an increasingly important animal model in a variety of biological research fields. In many countries legislation exists to promote and increase welfare wherever possible, including the ability to view animals during daily...
The use of agricultural animals in biomedical research is increasing. Their overall size and metabolic rate, organ size, longer gestation period, and other physiological similarities make them good candidates for animal models of human disease...
A number of mutilating procedures, such as dehorning in cattle and goats and beak trimming in laying hens, are common in farm animal husbandry systems in an attempt to prevent or solve problems, such as...
Orang-utans are the largest mainly arboreal animal: wild orang-utans rarely come to the forest floor. In contrast, the locomotion behaviour of captive orang-utans encompasses more time on the ground and they spend less time on...
Monkeys first arrived in the Comparative Biology Centre (CBC) at Newcastle University in 2000. They were housed in three small separate units consisting of steel and wooden cages. In 2011 a decision was made to...
The captive environment of a laboratory animal can profoundly influence its welfare and the scientific validity of research produced. The African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis) is a common model organism, however current husbandry guidelines lack...
In cases where different species might be housed in the same room or secondary enclosure, the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals recommends that the animals should be behaviorally compatible and have...
The study of laboratory animal behavior has increased steadily over the last decade, with expanding emphasis on a variety of commonly used species. In the United States, this trend was initially focused on species for...
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...
Xenopus laevis is a commonly used research animal for which well accepted enrichment strategies have not been established. Our overall objective was to identify enrichment strategies that are most beneficial to Xenopus as a step...
Environmental enrichment has become an important aspect of animal care in research facilities over the years. It is easy to come up with enrichment for mice, rats, and other mammals; however, what do you get...
Clinical Laboratory Animal Medicine: An Introduction, Fourth Edition offers a user-friendly guide to the unique anatomy and physiology, care, common diseases, and treatment of small mammals and nonhuman primates. Carefully designed for ease of use...
Xenopus are a hardy, long-lived, aquatic amphibian species which readily adapt to a captive environment. This characteristic makes Xenopus ideal for the laboratory, where they are used extensively in basic and biomedical research. Though husbandry...
Since there is evidence that the bottom cages can impact research, this should be a good reason to eliminate the two-tier system with its species-inappropriate bottom-tier cages.
Xenopus laevis is the most widely used model amphibian species in laboratories, yet there is almost no experimental evidence to guide best practice for captive housing. Enrichment is an important component of maintenance and welfare...
The preference of Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus) for different in-cage shelters was tested. First, 15 males and 15 females were made to choose between a cage with a shelter and one without. Different shelters were...
Each chapter follows a consistent pattern describing the behavioral characteristics of the species featured. Reference is made to the natural state before domestication, leading us through the various changes to the present, demonstrating along the...

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