Considerable progress has been made in the application of the principles of reduction and replacement, but implementing refinements requires that we are able to recognise signs of pain, distress and poor welfare.
If we cannot accurately assess signs of pain and distress, then we cannot determine the significance of a refinement to a research protocol.
We also need to be able to recognise signs of both good and poor welfare, in a wide range of different circumstances, in order that appropriate action can be taken.
A key issue is the training of new staff, to enable them to become rapidly familiar with these changes in the animals they work with.
This website aims to provide practical guidance in recognising signs of health and good welfare and to help users of the site to become better able to identify signs of pain, distress and poor welfare in laboratory animals.