Assessment of spontaneously occurring periodic limb movements in sleep in the rat

OBJECTIVE: Periodic limb movements in sleep (PLMS) are often associated with the restless legs syndrome (RLS). Although the dopaminergic system seems to be involved, the pathophysiology of PLMS and RLS is still obscure. The objective of this study is to explore whether a PLMS-like phenomenon can be observed in rodents in order to elucidate the […]

A novel flexible method to split feeding behaviour into bouts

Before meal patterns can be analysed properly, a biologically relevant meal criterion must be determined in order to group short-term feeding behaviour into meals. Existing methodologies are based on modelling of the frequency distributions of intervals between feeding events but these methods cannot be used if the proper distributions cannot be clearly identified. For such […]

A Comparison of Three Models for Ethical Evaluation of Proposed Animal Experiments

Three recently developed and published schemes to evaluate the acceptability of proposed animal experiments are discussed and compared: 1. The model developed at the request of the Dutch Veterinary Public Health Chief Inspectorate by the Department of Animal Problems of Leiden University (the ‘Dutch Model’); 2. The model proposed by the Canadian, David G Porter […]

Flexible search behavior in domestic cats (Felis catus): A case study of predator-prey interaction

Domestic cats (Felis catus) were administered an object permanence task in a novel and a familiar situation to investigate flexibility (i.e., pause behavior and searching by following a path opposite of that taken by the object when it disappeared) in search behavior. Pause and opposite search were assumed to be independent, equipmbable, and randomly exhibited […]

The ecology of individuals-incidence and implications for individual specialization

Most empirical and theoretical studies of resource use and population dynamics treat conspecific individuals as ecologically equivalent. This simplification is only justified if interindividual niche variation is rare, weak, or has a trivial effect on ecological processes. This article reviews the incidence, degree, causes, and implications of individual-level niche variation to challenge these simplifications. Evidence […]

Dairy farmers’ use and non-use values in animal welfare: Determining the empirical content and structure with anchored best-worst scaling

In this study, we sought to identify empirically the types of use and non-use values that motivate dairy farmers in their work relating to animal welfare of dairy cows. We also sought to identify how they prioritize between these use and non-use values. Use values are derived from productivity considerations; non-use values are derived from […]

Improving quality of science through better animal welfare: the NC3Rs strategy

Good animal welfare is linked to the quality of research data derived from laboratory animals, their validity as models of human disease, the number of animals required to reach statistical significance and the reproducibility of in vivo studies. Identifying new ways of understanding and improving animal welfare, and promoting these in the scientific community, is […]