Data was compiled over the course of the study and compared statistically using a t-test to detect meaningful differences between bedding types. Significance was determined
by a p value of <0.01.
Our results were confirmed by repeating the same procedure
in a second trial with two key differences. First, we wanted
to ensure that “rater bias” wasn’t influencing which cages
were spot-changed, since the first study involved a single care
attendant in both rooms. Thus, for the second iteration, the
husbandry activities in each room were conducted by different
individuals. Second, we wanted to confirm our previous results
using a different formulation of cellulose bedding.
For the duration of the second study, mice were maintained
on corn-cob bedding for a total of 12 weeks (six weeks change-out, six weeks spot-change), and cellulose bedding for a total of
14 weeks (seven weeks changeout, seven weeks spot-change).
Over the course of the study, cages containing corn-cob
bedding required 3-10 times more spot changes compared to
those maintained on pelleted cellulose. Based on these results
we concluded that pelleted cellulose bedding greatly decreased
the number of cages that required changing on non-change out
weeks. This could result in cost savings from decreased labor
and decreased cage processing, as well as improve animal welfare within our facilities.
ANALYSIS OF BREEDING LEVELS BASED ON BEDDING TYPE
Breeding productivity and efficient colony management is
a cornerstone of many research programs, and numerous
investigators in our facilities maintain their own breeding
colonies. Thus, it was vital that we determine whether a
change to cellulose bedding would result in any changes in
Air Speed and Patterns Affect
Welfare and Experiments
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Smoke Tests Provide Accurate Visualization
of Air Speed and Patterns
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Rodents prefer still air to moving air
Still air is defined as air that moves at speeds
less than 50 linear feet per minute*
Our cages move air at speeds
less than 13 linear feet per minute
Figure 1: Various types of bedding utilized for the bedding trials.
A) Soiled corn-cob bedding. B) Clean corn-cob bedding. C) Soiled
cellulose bedding. D) Clean cellulose bedding. The alternate formulation of cellulose bedding is not pictured.