Does a rotational enrichment program improve the well being of sprague dawley rats
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Does a Rotational Enrichment Program Improve the Well-being of Sprague Dawley Rats?. Debra L. Hickman, DVM, MS, DACLAM. Enrichment for Rats. Structural & Social. Nesting/Foraging/Gnawing. Research Question. Can we improve rat well-being by implementing a rotational enrichment scheme?

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Does a rotational enrichment program improve the well being of sprague dawley rats

Does a Rotational Enrichment Program Improve the Well-being of Sprague Dawley Rats?

Debra L. Hickman, DVM, MS, DACLAM





Research question
Research Question of Sprague

  • Can we improve rat well-being by implementing a rotational enrichment scheme?

  • We know this is important in other highly social species (e.g. dogs, NHP)

  • Proposed use of behavioral and immunological assessment to measure rat well-being






Materials and methods
Materials and Methods of Sprague

  • Male Sprague Dawley rats

  • Train to Spatial Cognitive Bias Assay

  • Test on Spatial Cognitive Bias Assay

    • Initial

    • Repeat in 3 months

    • Reverse the location of the rewarded pot and measure learning and path


Experimental design
Experimental Design of Sprague

  • All individually housed with no enrichment during training

  • After learn spatial discrimination task:

    • Move to treatment condition

    • Initiate testing 24-36 hours later

  • Repeat cognitive bias testing 3 months later

  • Reverse rewarded vs nonrewarded locations and measure days to learn and path of exploration


Treatment groups
Treatment Groups of Sprague

  • Controls:

    • Social isolation

    • Pair housed

  • Intracage shelter

  • Nesting material

  • Daily provision of food treat

  • Shelter, nesting material, and daily food treat (“superenriched”)

  • Weekly rotation of shelter, nesting material, and daily food treat


Results
results of Sprague


Acknowledgements
Acknowledgements of Sprague

  • Melissa Swan

  • R’nld Wheeler

  • Tiffany Riddle

  • Jessica Peveler

  • Jesus Bazan


Does a rotational enrichment program improve the well being of sprague dawley rats

Questions? of Sprague