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. 

Failing to provide hamsters with a method to wear down their teeth can lead to detrimental behaviour such as bar chewing, and health issues, for example, overgrown teeth and tooth loss. However, hamsters use their...

Hamsters have historically been used in our pharmacokinetic (PK) studies using the retro-orbital (RO) bleeding technique to collect blood samples. If performed incorrectly, this technique has the potential for animal welfare complications not usually seen...

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...

The revised fifth edition of Clinical Laboratory Animal Medicine: An Introduction is an accessible guide to basic information for conducting animal research safely and responsibly. It includes a review of the unique anatomic and physiologic...

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is commonly used to kill rodents. However, a large body of research has now established that CO2 is aversive to them. A multidisciplinary symposium organized by the Swiss Federal Food Safety and...

Repeated injections in rats and mice are typically done via the tail vein. For hamsters, the tail is not an option. In this paper we explore the development and refinement of IV dosing in the...

Although Syrian hamsters are thought to be naturally solitary, recent evidence from our laboratory demonstrates that hamsters may actually prefer social contact. Hamsters increase their preference for a location associated with an agonistic encounter regardless...

Laboratory animals are still necessary in scientific investigation and vaccine testing, but while novel methodological approaches are not available for their replacement, the search for new, humane, easy, and painless methods is necessary to diminish...

Covering species-typical behavior as well as abnormal/malfunctional behavior and stereotypes observed in mice, rats, hamsters and gerbils, this is an excellent resource for those looking to implement or enhance an existing behavioral husbandry and enrichment...

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...

In practice, consideration is given to providing most of the species used in research,testing and education withsome level of environmental enrichment. However, although the current level of awareness and understanding about the benefits of environmental...

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...

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...

Environmental enrichment can be defined as altering the living environment of captive animals in order to provide them with opportunities to express more of their natural behavioral repertoire. The challenge of providing effective enrichment in...

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...

The Biology and Medicine of Rabbits and Rodents provides concise, up - to - date, reasonably comprehensive information to anyone concerned with the health, care, and management of rabbits and rodents. The book is intended...

This study tested whether Syrian hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus) have an aversion to old bedding (up to 14 days) by offering them the option to nest in a new cage. A secondary goal was to assess...

This column discusses the use of novel dietary supplements as environmental enrichment for rodents and rabbits. Items are commercially available from lab animal supply companies. The purpose of enrichment is to encourage behaviors that are...

Veterinary technician Evelyn Skoumbourdis and environmental enrichment coordinator Casey Coke Murphy discuss proper feeding of small laboratory mammals.

Daily activity rhythms are nearly universal among animals and their specific pattern is an adaptation of each species to its ecological niche. Owing to the extremely consistent nocturnal patterns of activity shown by golden hamsters...

This article provides details to consider when preparing to use animals in biomedical research. The stress of transport and receipt of animals into a new environment mandate the need for a period of stabilization and...

Environmental conditions such as housing and husbandry have a major impact on the laboratory animal throughout its life and will thereby influence the outcome of animal experiments. However, housing systems for laboratory animals have often...

Many aspects of the research animal's housing environment are controlled for quality and/or standardization. Of recent interest is the potential for environmental enrichment to have unexpected consequences such as unintended harm to the animal, or...

In this article, laws and guidelines relating to rodent enrichment are reviewed, the natural behaviors of select rodent species are discussed, and an overview of widely used types of enrichment in laboratory rodent management is...

Share This!