Mouse identification methods and potential welfare issues: a survey of current practice in the UK
small and under-represented, which makes a fair
comparison impossible. In the future we would be
interested to find out whether results from different
groups would vary.
Since the sur vey, the Federation of European
Laborator y Animal Science Associations (FELASA)
Working Groups has published two repor ts with
recommendations on rodent identification and
genotyping.6,7 It should be noted that these reports may
subsequently have influenced identification marking in
the UK and elsewhere. Nevertheless, the survey has
indeed given some useful baseline information on
mouse identification methods used in the UK and how
they are perceived, particularly by unit managers and
NACWOs. The welfare consequences of the commonly
used identification methods have not been extensively
studied, so further research is required to compare the
most commonly used mouse identification methods,
namely ear punch or ear notch, marker pen, microchip
and ear tag.
We would like to thank everyone who has given their
valuable time and input to answer the survey on mouse
identification carried out by the Royal Veterinar y
College. NHM was funded by a studentship from the
Ministry of Higher Education, Malaysia and Universiti
Home Office Science. Statistics of Scientific Procedures
http://www.homeof fice.gov.uk/publications/scienceresearch-statistics/research-statistics/other-scienceresearch/spanimals11/spanimals11?view=Binar y
(2012, accessed 21 January 2013).
Cinelli, P., Rettich, A., Seifert, B., Burki, K. and Arras,
M. (2007). Comparative analysis and physiological impact
of different tissue biopsy methodologies used for the
genotyping of laboratory mice. Laboratory Animals, Vol
41, No. 2, 174-184.
Balcombe, J.P., Barnard, N.D. and Sandusky, C. (2004).
Laboratory routines cause animal stress. Contemporary
Topics in Laboratory Animal Science, Vol 43, No. 6, 4251.
Hurst, J.L. and West, R.S. (2008). Taming anxiety in
laboratory mice. Nature Methods, Vol 7, No. 10, 825-826.
Kilkenny, C., Browne, W.J., Cuthill, I.C., Emerson, M. and
Altman, D.G. (2010). Improving bioscience research
reporting: the ARRIVE guidelines for reporting animal
research. PLoS Biology, Vol 8, No. 6, e1000412.
Dahlborn, K., Bugnon, P., Nevalainen, T., Raspa, M.,
Verbost, P. and Spangenberg, E. (2013). Report of the
Federation of European Laborator y Animal Science
Associations Working Group on animal identification.
Laboratory Animals, Vol 47, No.1, 2-11.
Bonaparte, D., Cinelli, P., Douni, E. et al. (2013). FELASA
guidelines for the refinement of methods for genotyping
genetically-modified rodents: A report of the Federation of
European Laborator y Animal Science Associations
Working Group. Laboratory Animals Vol 47, No. 3, 134145.
Williams, W.O., Riskin, D.K. and Mott, A.K. (2008).
Ultrasonic sound as an indicator of acute pain in
laboratory mice. Journal for American Association of
Laboratory Animal Science, Vol 47, No. 1, 8-10.
Kasanen, I.H., Voipio, H.M., Leskinen, H., Luodonpaa, M.
and Nevalainen, T.O. (2011). Comparison of ear tattoo,
ear notching and microtattoo in rats undergoing
cardiovascular telemetry. Laboratory Animals, Vol 45, No.
Leslie, E., Hernández-Jover, M., Newman, R. and
Holyoake, P. (2010). Assessment of acute pain
experienced by piglets from ear tagging, ear notching and
intraperitoneal injectable transponders. Applied Animal
Behaviour Science, Vol 127, No. 3-4, 86-95.
Poole, T. (1997). Happy animals make good science.
Laboratory Animals, Vol 31, 116-124.
Wang, L. (2005). A primer on rodent identification
methods. Lab Animal (NY), Vol 34, No. 4, 64-67.
Robinson, V., Morton, D.B., Anderson, D. et al. (2003).
Refinement and reduction in production of genetically
modified mice. Laboratory Animals, Vol 37, Suppl.1, S1S49.
Castelhano-Carlos, M,J., Sousa, N., Ohl, F. and
Baumans, V. (2010). Identification methods in newborn
C57BL/6 mice: a developmental and behavioural
evaluation. Laboratory Animals, Vol 44, No. 2, 88-103.
Burn, C.C., Deacon, R.M. and Mason, G.J. (2008).
Marked for life? Effects of early cage-cleaning frequency,
delivery batch, and identification tail-marking on rat
anxiety profiles. Developmental Psychobiology, Vol 50,
No. 3, 266-277.
Cover, C.E., Keenan, C.M. and Bettinger, G.E. (1989).
Ear tag induced Staphylococcus infection in mice.
Laboratory Animals, Vol 23, No. 3, 229-233.
Baron, B.W., Langan, G., Huo, D., Baron, J.M. and
Montag, A. (2005). Squamous cell carcinomas of the
skin at ear tag sites in aged FVB/N mice. Comparative
Medicine, Vol 55, No. 3, 231-235.
Schaefer, D.C., Asner, I.N., Seifert, B., Burki, K. and
Cinelli, P. (2010). Analysis of physiological and
behavioural parameters in mice after toe clipping as
newborns. Laboratory Animals, Vol 44, No. 1, 7-13.
Norecopa. Toe clipping in mice: An evaluation of the
method and alternatives, http://www.norecopa.no/
norecopa/vedlegg/Norecopa-toeclip.pdf (2008, accessed
26 July 2012).
National Research Council USA. 1996. Guide for the
Care and Use of Laboratory Animals. The National
Academy Press, Washington DC.
National Research Council USA. 2011. Guide for the
Care and Use of Laboratory Animals: Eighth Edition. The
National Academies Press, Washington DC.
Keating, S.C.J., Thomas, A.A., Flecknell, P.A. and Leach,
M.C. (2012). Evaluation of EMLA cream for preventing
pain during tattooing of rabbits: Changes in physiological,
behavioural and facial expression responses. PLoS ONE,
Vol 7, No. 9, e44437.
Li, X., Gu, W., Masinde, G. et al. (2001). Genetic control
of the rate of wound healing in mice. Heredity, Vol 86,
Rajnoch, C., Ferguson, S., Metcalfe, A.D., Herrick, S.E.,
Willis, H.S. and Ferguson, M.W.J. (2003). Regeneration