For those concerned about animal welfare
This website contains links to a large number of animal protection and welfare organisations.
The use of animals in research is an ethical problem, since some procedures require the complete opposite of normal veterinary practice, which is to help sick animals become healthy. This problem has been addressed by the laboratory animal community itself for many years, not least through application of the concept of the 3Rs of Russell and Burch.
It is in fact in everyone's interest that animals are as normal and healthy as possible when they are used in research. Animals living in harmony with their surroundings will have values of clinical parameters such as stress hormones and blood pressure which are within normal limits. It is therefore much easier to detect a treatment effect on such animals, at a lower treatment dosage, than on animals which are stressed at the onset of the experiment. Good animal welfare is therefore also good science, and vice versa (Nuffield Council on Bioethics).
Fighting cancer: Animal research at Cambridge explains some of the issues.
The Research Animals Department of the RSPCA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, UK) explains their views on the use of animals for research and testing.
Edinburgh University offers an online course in Animal Welfare and Behaviour.
This page will gradually be populated with specific links on laboratory animal welfare, but many of the other sections of this website already contain such information.
If you are looking for information which is not readily available here, please feel free to contact Norecopa.
- Resources on animal sentience (RSPCA)
- Mellor DJ & Beausoleil NJ (2015): Extending the 'Five Domains' model for animal welfare assessment to incorporate positive welfare states. Animal Welfare, 24(3), 241-253
- Webster J (2016): Animal Welfare: Freedoms, Dominions and "A Life Worth Living". Animals, 6(6), 35; doi:10.3390/ani6060035
- Mellor DJ (2016) Moving beyond the “Five Freedoms” by Updating the “Five Provisions” and Introducing Aligned “Animal Welfare Aims”, Animals, 6 (10), 59; doi:10.3390/ani6100059
- Hemsworth PH, Mellor DJ, Cronin GM & Tilbrook AJ (2015): Scientific assessment of animal welfare. New Zealand Veterinary Journal, 63(1): 24-30.
- Mellor, D.J. (2017): Operational Details of the Five Domains Model and Its Key Applications to the Assessment and Management of Animal Welfare. Animals, 7, 60.
- The 3Rs: What are Medical Scientists Doing about Animal Testing?
- Webb LE, Veenhoven R, Lynning Harfeld J & Bak Hansen M (2018): What is animal happiness? Annals of the New York Academy of Science.
- Special issue of the journal Animals with papers on animal emotion
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