Acclimatization, socialization, and welfare of Göttingen Minipigs
This document focuses on the time immediately after the minipig has been transported to your facility until the beginning of the experimental procedures. Apart from general considerations regarding a beneficial acclimation period, specific instructions are provided including suggestions for a socialization program.
It contains valuable information on what could interfere with the welfare of the minipigs, factors that might cause stress and possible health issues, as well as hints for assessment of pain and disease. It also contains a chapter relating to housing, and therefore makes good reading way before receiving the minipigs, so you can make sure to provide appropriate accommodation.
The overall purpose is to improve general minipig welfare and conditions during the acclimation period, but also during the study by ensuring good conditions and minipig welfare. The animals will be easier to handle during experiments and will ultimately contribute to valid study results.
Though many people working with minipigs will already be familiar with most of the content of this text, it can be a good idea to review the routines, reconsider some aspects, and discuss whether there is room for improvement. Sometimes small improvements and differences can have a positive effect on the welfare of the minipigs.
A high degree of animal welfare is valuable to both animals and humans, which is imperative in performing biomedical research of high scientific value.
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