Welfare assessment: AWERB members
The AWERB should insist that all project applications are accompanied by a welfare assessment protocol that has been tailored for the species and strain. This should demonstrate understanding of the welfare impact of the animals’ lifetime experiences, including the procedure and its effects. The protocols do not have to be included in the licence application, but it is important for the AWERB to see these and have the opportunity to discuss them with the researcher.
If an applicant cannot adequately set out the welfare issues, or if the AWERB has concerns about the potential for severe suffering, a welfare pilot study may be requested (see section 2.3.4 of the JWGR report (PDF 818KB)). This is a useful way of establishing the potential impact of the experimental approach and aiding the production of a suitable welfare assessment protocol.
Some useful information can be found here:
- JWGR (Joint Working Group on Refinement; 2011) A guide to defining and implementing protocols for the welfare assessment of laboratory animals (PDF 818KB). Laboratory Animals 45: 1-13
- NC3Rs welfare assessment resource //www.nc3rs.org.uk/welfare-assessment
- European Commission (2012) Working document on a severity assessment framework (PDF 702KB)
- European Commission (2013) Examples to illustrate the process of severity classification, day-to-day assessment and actual severity assessment (PDF 840KB)