Small species struggle less and emit fewer distress calls than large species. Skilled observers who know the behavior of a particular species or strain of animal and of the individual animals under their care could provide a reliable assessment of the state of the animals. Abdominal surgery is thought to be less painful in four-legged animals than in humans, because humans use their abdominal muscles to a much greater extent in maintaining posture and for walking. It is important to know the signs of stress of the species in your care because inadequate setup will trigger stress responses in an animal and immunosuppression can follow. Pain, stress, and distress that are not produced specifically for study should be viewed as unnecessary, unwanted, data-compromising side effects (Amyx, 1987; Spinelli and Markowitz, 1987). The relative importance of those factors depends on the type of stressor—physical (e.g., tissue damage or immobilization), physiologic (e.g., exercise), or psychologic (e.g., altered environment)—and on its magnitude, frequency, and timing. Heat stress is increased in calm air conditions because convective heat loss is dramatically decreased. Thus, as described in Chapters 1 and 2, a simplified view of the pain experience includes two major components: sensory and affective or emotional. No sign, however, can by itself regarded as diagnostic of pain, because similar signs occur in conditions in which pain is unlikely. Teeth grinding is another common sign of pain in sheep. G. Experiments on unanesthetized animals which may be expected to have more than minimal pain and/or distress and/or where death is anticipated. Moderate heat stress – sheep show fast panting, progressing to mouth slightly open, but the tongue is not extended beyond the lips. Without a knowledge of their normal and abnormal behavior and appearance, assessment of pain in animals is difficult, because animals are unable to communicate in ways in which they can be readily understood by people (Hughes and Lang, 1983; Soma, 1987). More chronic and persistent pain might be associated with anorexia, lethargy, and weight loss, although it is difficult to associate any of these signs of lack of well-being specifically with pain. Those signs can often be associated with activation of the sympathetic nervous system as manifested in increased heart and respiratory rate, dilated pupils, increased body temperature, sweating, and muscle tremors. Normal guinea pigs will stampede and squeal when frightened, when attempts are made to handle them, or when strangers are in the room, but sick guinea pigs and those in pain will usually remain quiet. There can be a great deal of interspecies and individual variability, so one animal might respond quite differently from another (Vierck, 1976). An animal in stress that previously would have investigated a new visitor to the room or a change in the environment might now fail to do so or attempt to escape. In any clinical examination of an animal, inspection and palpation are important. If … The first direct information about an animal should be readily apparent from examination of its cage card and clinical record. A systemically ill animal might be less tolerant of pain than a healthy one, but a moribund or severely ill animal might be nonresponsive albeit in distress. The main indicator of heat stress is continued panting, even when the animal is standing still. It is intended to enable readers to recognize and assess pain, stress, and distress in laboratory animals for the purposes of developing therapeutic, environmental, and behavioral strategies for decreasing them and lessening their impact on experimental data. There can be inappetence, shivering, and increased respiration with panting. milking cows, a sudden decrease in milk yield. As a blanket prescription, this has obvious shortcomings. The observation and study period after the intervention may produce more than moderate pain, distress, or illness and/or significantly impair the ability of the animal to function in its environment. A. This constant monitoring is probably what keeps the sheep in a mob as they move along grazing. Use low-stress stock handling techniques, which reduce physical heat. Graze paddocks without shade before hot conditions develop. As with all surgical procedures, appropriate anesthesia should be used to render the animal insensitive to pain. Nocturnal species, which during daylight hours exhibit very little species-typical behavior other than sleeping, should be observed at times that coincide with their active period, e.g., early in the morning, when the animals are still awake and moving about.

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