Assessment of the Welfare of Experimental Cattle and Pigs Using the Animal Welfare Assessment Grid
Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Surrey School of Veterinary Medicine, VSM Building, Daphne Jackson Rd, Guildford GU2 7AL, UK
The Pirbright Institute, Ash Road, Woking, Surrey GU24 0NF, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Fabio Napolitano
Received: 16 March 2021
Revised: 25 March 2021
Accepted: 30 March 2021
Published: 2 April 2021
The Animal Welfare Assessment Grid is a method for assessing quality of life, originally designed for experimental primates. This study adapts this welfare assessment tool for use in cattle and pigs, by adapting the factors included in welfare assessment for these species and including data which had been collected previously as the standard approach to monitoring these species in a research setting. The main intention is that the results presented will demonstrate how the data collected in a research environment can be improved for welfare assessment and also demonstrate the applicability of this welfare assessment tool to cattle and pigs. This paper emphasises the importance of including behavioural information when assessing welfare and not simply relying on assessment of physical condition. As a tool for assessing quality of life over a lifetime, the Animal Welfare Assessment Grid also demonstrated the potential for aiding the decision-making of when euthanasia should be performed.