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Conference abstract2013

Assessment of laboratory mouse Welfare using animal-based measures

Spangenberg, Elin; Keeling, Linda


Protocols to assess laboratory animal health and welfare are commonly used in experimental studies to record the outcome on the animal as a result of an experimental input. In laboratory mice, many of the welfare problems do however occur in the home cage and are irrespective of the type of research. Assessment of the home cage environment is commonly performed using resource-based measures for example, group size or access to nesting material. Since animals react differently to the same environment depending on age, sex, genetic background, previous experiences etc., it is more relevant to assess welfare as animalbased (outcome) measures rather than resource and management-based (input) measures. The same animal-based measures can then be applied in different types of animal facilities, allowing comparisons between them, or to track changes over time following modification in housing and management within the same facility. The aim of this project was to design and test a protocol for assessing the welfare of laboratory mice in their home cage using only animal-based measures. The parameters used were selected to cover different aspects of animal welfare, namely good feeding, housing and health, and appropriate behavior. These aspects are divided into 12 welfare criteria and parameters were selected to match the criteria, to be feasible in practise and, if possible, be already validated indicators of mouse welfare. The protocol was tested at three different animal facilities in Sweden during 2012. The development of the protocol and results from the testing will be presented

Published in

Journal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science
2013, Volume: 52, number: 3, pages: 348-348 Publisher: AALAS


12th FELASA SECAL Congress